The project has been shot down multiple times – most recently by Queensborough President Melinda Katz – citing the lack of affordable housing. While the current developer, Alma Realty, says that 20% of the buildings apartments will be affordable, many politicians and residents don’t see them as such. The City Council says they will push for at least 30% of the space to be affordable housing.
Councilmember Costa Constantinides spoke out about his thought the project, stating on Facebook:
“Residential development in the 21st Century must be innovative, contextual, and inclusive of its community. To achieve that, the private and public sectors must work together. The City Planning Commission’s vote on the Astoria Cove proposed development is only the start of this process. Both Community Board 1 and Borough President Katz have voted against the proposal with recommendations. While the new housing stock is sorely needed, the development must work for all Astorians. When the project comes before the City Council, we will work with the developer and focus on providing ample affordable housing, dramatically increasing public transportation capacity on and off of the peninsula, and keeping the development within the fabric of the community. The development, done correctly, has the opportunity to be a transformative moment for us but only if built to the highest standards.”
So – it could be good…or it could be bad. It will be great if – yes – they do offer more affordable housing, but to be honest, that won’t be something we can truly see until the apartments are built and up for sale.
Further oppositions are to the lack of public transportation to the area – an added cost. All in all, if building of the site begins, it will take at least ten years for the project to be complete – during which rent rates and housing prices will continue to sky rocket.