A group of New York City developers is moving forward with a plan to build a mixed-use district covering five city blocks in Astoria, Queens. The developers say they plan to invest $2 billion in the project, dubbed Innovation QNS.
The New York City Council recently voted to approve land use applications filed by Kaufman Astoria Bedrock I LLC and Silverstein Astoria Member LLC for the project designed by master plan architect ODA. The developers, BedRock Real Estate Partners and Silverstein Properties, have also partnered with film and television studio Kaufman Astoria on the project.
The sites off currently contain a mix of parking lots and industrial and commercial buildings that city officials say are underutilized.
The Innovation QNS plan calls for construction of 3,190 residential units, 45% of which would be affordable housing. There would be 200,000 sq ft of space for shops, restaurants and entertainment, plus two acres of open space with amenities, including a performance space and dog park.
The developers say the plan would also mesh with nearby landmarks, such as the Kaufman Arts District, Museum of the Moving Image and Frank Sinatra School of the Arts, with 250,000 sq ft of space for small businesses and nonprofits in creative industries.
A spokesperson for the project did not immediately respond to inquiries about the timeline for awarding construction contracts.
City officials OK’d the plan after the developers agreed to increase the number of affordable housing units, said Council Member Julie Won, who represents the district that includes the development.
“As a community, we have set a new standard for building affordable housing on private land,” Won said in a statement.