Astoria, Real Estate
Feb 20, 2014

Yet Another Development Site on Astoria’s Waterfront

Looks like there’s yet another development site on Astoria’s waterfront. We already know about Hallets Point and Astoria Cove—two large scale developments that could bring about 4,000 units of housing (…)

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Developments coming to western Astoria – click to enlarge.

Looks like there’s yet another development site on Astoria’s waterfront. We already know about Hallets Point and Astoria Cove—two large scale developments that could bring about 4,000 units of housing to that mini-peninsula jutting into the East River. Last month, the 160,000-square-foot lot at 3-15 26th Avenue sold for $26.5 million, according to The Real Deal. It is indicated on the image above by the “A” map market.

Potentially, this could be turned into 800,000-square-foot residential site. The key bit of info is that the lot is still zoned as manufacturing, not residential or mixed-use, hence the (relatively) low price (last year it was going for $80 million). It’s going to cost a lot of money and time to file the paperwork to secure a zoning variance.

These details are also pretty interesting:

A source familiar with the deal said that despite multiple bidders, the property had no interim uses without infrastructure upgrade (which could take up to seven years) that could support a purchase price over $30 million. To make a residential project viable, the city would have to build infrastructure such as a connection to the main road and sewage, the source added. Le Noble came close to a deal with a major movie studio, the source said, but the site was too small for such a use.

And the most entertaining tidbit is that this site was the location was featured in Freejack, which starred Emilio Estevez, Rene Russo, Anthony Hopkins, and finally Mick Jagger as a mercenary. It was set in the future—2009. Apparently it was a flop. Here’s the trailer:

So what does that mean for Astoria if the property does get rezoned to residential? Well, as things are now, it could become an area that is seriously stressed when it comes to basic services like sewer, power, and water. And even without anything being built on this particular piece of property, the new developments are likely going to break the system unless upgrades happen (it seems like a no-brainer, but you never know). Transportation/transit is also another concern, since it’s about a mile and a half from the nearest subway station (we love the idea of a ferry dock in Astoria). Here’s hoping someone with enough smarts can get the area what it needs because from here, it doesn’t look like developers are going to give up on building in this area of Astoria.

How about you? Would you like to see another residential development in this area? We’d love to hear your thoughts on this. And if you ever saw Freejack, let us know that, too!

Astoria waterfront development site trades for $26.5M [TRD]

About Meg Cotner

Meg Cotner was trained as a harpsichordist and now works as a freelance writer and editor. She is the author of "Food Lovers' Guide to Queens," and is a skilled and avid home cook, baker, and preserver.

2 Comments

NativeNyer

Where will all the people who live in the area go? They’ll stay where they are now!! Why should they leave if expensive, I mean overpriced, apartment buildings are built nearby? Sheesh what a shallow way to look at that area which by the way isn’t scary. As a former Astoria resident I used to be in that area all of the time when I went to Build It Green and when we played frisbee and baseball in Whitey Ford field. Perhaps you’d feel more at home in a gated community on LI.

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G Knight

I recently drove to that area – I wanted to check out Whitey Ford Field. That area is SCARY. I would not feel safe walking in the area – and frankly, I was prepared to gun through a light if necessary. I’m sure it will be at least a decade before that area will be “gentrified”.

Here’s a question: where will all the people who live around there – there are projects nearby and run-down houses – go when all this is built and everything is expensive?

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