Taste of LIC
Jun
12
6:30 PM18:30

Taste of LIC

  • The Backlot at Kaufman Astoria Studios (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

Stop by our table to learn the latest on the Sunnyside Yard Master Planning Process!

Doors open: 6:30pm

The Backlot at Kaufman Astoria Studios:
35th Avenue between 35th and 36th Streets
N/W to Broadway; M/R to Steinway Street

The 14th Annual celebration of the food, drink, culture and community of Western Queens, to benefit The Chocolate Factory Theater’s residency, performance and community programs.

Performance by Neil Greenberg.

Confirmed purveyors (as of June 9): AlewifeBartleby & SageBeebe’sBellwetherBentOn NYCBig Alice BrewingBlend on the WaterBLVD Wine BarBrooklyn BreweryButcher BarCasa EnriqueCharlito’s CocinaChef Etienne’sCorazon de MexicoThe Creek & The CaveDutch Kills CentraalEdibly SpeakingFounders BrewingGeorge’sHuntress Whiskey & WingsICONYC BrewingJailhouse CoffeeKurry QultureLady M ConfectionsLevanteLIC Beer ProjectLIC MarketLittle Chef Little KitchenM. Wells SteakhouseMikkeller BreweryNana PiesNapoli Pizza & PastaNéo BakeryPantry EateryPartners CoffeeR’A’R Bar: Rèst-âü-RántRockaway BrewingSac’s Place Astoria, The Sandwich King, Singlecut BeersmithsSKI BeersLICeSquare Wine & SpiritsSugar FreakSunswickSweetleafTacuba Cantina MexicanaTea and MilkThe Thirsty KoalaTom Cat BakeryVernon GrilleWhite Coffee CorporationWoodbine’sZenon Taverna. More to come!

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Taste of Sunnyside
May
21
6:00 PM18:00

Taste of Sunnyside

We had a great time talking to Sunnyside residents about the Sunnyside Yard Master Planning Process and sampling food from local Sunnyside vendors!

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Description

The 2019 Taste of Sunnyside will showcase the best in culinary options that Sunnyside, Queens has to offer, all under one roof!

With a wide variety of food, beer & wine offerings, and live entertainment, the Taste of Sunnyside will showcase tastes of what Sunnyside has to offer as a year round culinary destination for your cravings.

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Sunnyside Yard Public Workshop: Transportation & Mobility
May
1
6:00 PM18:00

Sunnyside Yard Public Workshop: Transportation & Mobility

Thank you to everyone who joined us at the Sunnyside Yard Transportation Workshop. See below for a summary of findings!


EVENT SUMMARY

Date: May 1st, 2019  |  6-8pm 
Location: Growing Up Green Charter School  |  Dutch Kills, Queens
Attendance: 25+

This workshop focused on transportation and mobility in, over and around Sunnyside Yard. An opening presentation was led Mike Flynn of Sam Schwartz Engineering and Androniki Lagos of Urbane Development. The presentation opened with an overview of the planning process and progress update to-date, then went on to then went on to discuss the current state of transportation in Western Queens, potential improvements that would increase the efficiency and expand capacity of the transportation network, and examples the potential for Sunnyside Yard to shape the future of transportation. See here for the  full presentation.

After the presentation, attendees broke into small groups and participated in an activity that considered possible transportation interventions for Sunnyside Yard and the surrounding neighborhoods. Each group was given a set of cards detailing the tradeoffs of each intervention (i.e. cost, time to construct, added capacity), each table discussed the potential intervention options provided as well as any new interventions suggested and were asked to select and rank their top 4 desired interventions. Each table then had a discussion about the pros and cons associated with the proposed interventions. A representative from each group shared a summary of the activity and discussion.

Key Findings from activities and small group discussions:

  1. Top rated interventions included a regional rail station, better local bus service, walking and biking improvements, Bus Rapid Transit, and a variety of subway improvements including improved signaling, new subway lines, more frequent subway stops, and subway car redesign. Land use changes, street trolleys, and freight improvements were also ranked.

  2. Several teams noted that Sunnyside Yard should be a pedestrian-only zone. Some suggestions to improve the pedestrian experience include: prioritizing pedestrians at every intersection, placing cross-walks mid-block, and creating pedestrian bridges to connect along the north-south axes.  

  3. Little support for parking on the deck, with one team recommending off-site garages for residents

  4. Bus routes connecting the northern and southern edges of the Yard were particularly popular. One team noted that bus size should be contingent on the location and route, as some routes are more popular. Some teams recommended making the Rockaway Beach Line a BRT in an effort to reuse existing infrastructure.  

  5. Subway expansion was also popular, with the following expansions suggested: 

    • The E/F subway stop under Northern Blvd. 

    • Add a F subway stop at 36th Street 

    • Extend the G subway line by joining the 4 and M lines 

    • Increase the capacity on the E/M lines  

  6. Participants seemed keen on a Sunnyside Station with several teams noting the importance of connecting it to all regional train lines, including NJ Transit and Metro North. There was a suggestion that fare structure and/or integration would need to be further explored. 

  7. Other suggestions include:  

    • A trolley to connect residents across the Yard 

    • Greenway with bike lanes across the Yard and surrounding the perimeter of the site  

    • Universal ticket that can be used for all transit, including regional train lines  

    • Valet for CitiBike docks, as many are either completely empty or completely full  

    • Dedicated unloading zones for freight vehicles to ease congestion  

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Sunnyside Yard Public Workshop: Sustainability & Green Infrastructure
Apr
30
6:00 PM18:00

Sunnyside Yard Public Workshop: Sustainability & Green Infrastructure

Thank you to everyone who joined us at the Sunnyside Yard Sustainability Workshop. See below for a summary of findings!


EVENT SUMMARY

Date: April 30th, 2019  |  6-8pm 
Location: Jacob Riis Settlement Houses  |  Long Island City, Queens
Attendance: 30

This workshop focused on the sustainability and resiliency as it relates to Sunnyside Yard. An opening presentation was led by Annemarie Gray of NYCEDC, Androniki Lagos of Urbane Development, and James Schrader of Carlo Ratti Associati. In addition to reviewing community engagement to date and the opportunities and challenges presented by a potential Sunnyside Yard development, the presentation discussed City efforts and policies to address sustainability citywide, resiliency challenges for Western Queens, sustainability & resiliency efforts that Sunnyside Yard could enhance or enable, and case studies of future technologies that could be piloted at the Yard. See here for the full presentation.

 After the presentation, attendees broke into small groups. Each participant brainstormed the question, “what is a sustainable and resilient community to you?” Each group then organized their collective ideas and identified key themes. Facilitators then led a discussion around roadblocks to sustainable and resilient communities, and how Sunnyside Yard could help overcome those roadblocks. A representative from each group shared a summary of the activity and discussion.

Key Findings from activities and small group discussions:

  1. The following themes emerged as critical to sustainability and resilience efforts: nature, transportation, energy, community, industry/business, affordability, waste reduction, and buildings/construction.  

  2. The need for more opportunities to recycle, reuse, and compost emerged as opportunities to reduce waste.  

  3. There is a need to manage floods through stormwater management, upgrades to sewage, bioswales, and rainwater capture.  

  4. There is an opportunity to use Sunnyside Yard as a place to grow food for the local community through farms and gardens.  

  5. More existing buildings should be renovated and/or retrofitted with energy-saving materials and systems. More buildings should be LEED certified

  6. Community resilience emerged as a popular theme with participants making a case for a range of initiatives that could help strengthen residents of Western Queens against climate change. For instance, investing in youth through education and public youth programs was said in nearly every small group. Ensuring the diversity and inclusion of different communities that reflect demographics and income also emerged.  

  7. Affordability is a component of sustainability and resilience.

  8. Community ownership was of interest. Participants noted the need for community-owned housing, community-owned public space, and community-owned land through some type of Community Land Trust mechanism.

  9. Desire for good quality jobs with upward mobility potential. Need to better equip the workforce, for example in green jobs or union jobs, as a way to strengthen the sustainability of communities.   

  10. Exploring ways for the private sector to pay for research & development into sustainability initiatives

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Sunnyside Yard Public Workshop: Open Space
Apr
9
6:00 PM18:00

Sunnyside Yard Public Workshop: Open Space

Thank you to everyone who joined us at the Sunnyside Yard Open Space Workshop. See below for a summary of findings!


EVENT SUMMARY
Date: April 9th, 2019  |  6-8pm 
Location: PS199Q  |  Sunnyside, Queens
Attendance: Nearly 20

This workshop focused on the open space at Sunnyside Yard. An opening presentation was led by Lanie McKinnon of Nelson Byrd Woltz Landscape Architects and Androniki Lagos of Urbane Development. In addition to reviewing community engagement to date and the opportunities and challenges presented by a potential Sunnyside Yard development, the presentation discussed various types of open space are possible, the scale of parks and green space around the city, and how that relates to the kind of activities and facilities that can take place there. See here for the full presentation.

 After the presentation, attendees broke into small groups. Facilitators helped to conduct a mapping activity where participants indicated where they would like to see parks located on the Yard. Each group discussed desired characteristics for the parks, and the kinds of programs, facilities, and amenities they would like them to offer. A representative from each group shared a summary of the activity and discussion.


Key Findings from activities and small group discussions

  1. Most teams would like to see a central greenway, either in the form of a linear park that connects the east and west perimeters of the Yard, or as a loop of greenspace in the center of the Yard.  

  2. Most teams would like to see a connected park or greenway surrounding the Yard that is easily accessible to surrounding communities and helps to seamlessly overcome the elevation of the site. This should include bike lanes and walking/runs trails, preferably separated for safety purposes.  

  3. There is interest in a large destination park in Long Island City to combat the lack of open space and pollution in the Western most part of the Yard. 

  4. Neighborhood parks should be located near the perimeter of the Yard to increase access to open space for residents of surrounding communities. These can be smaller in size but closer together to create a knitted effect of green space.  

  5. Parks should be safe and walkable. For some participants, this means smaller parks that have better sightlines; for others it means better lighting and clearly marked paths.  

  6. There is a desire to make Sunnyside Yard a car-free zone. At the very least, it should be pedestrian friendly. This could mean limiting car access to service vehicles only, particularly during peak commute times.  

  7. Parks inside the Yard must be truly accessible. One idea is to build green connectors, similar to the Highline, that connect surrounding neighborhoods to the Yard to overcome the barriers of Skillman Ave. and Northern Blvd., which are not pedestrian friendly.  

  8. Topography must be varied to reflect the hills and valleys of the surrounding communities.  

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Sunnyside Yard Public Workshop: Urban Design
Apr
8
6:00 PM18:00

Sunnyside Yard Public Workshop: Urban Design

Thank you to everyone who joined us at the Sunnyside Yard Urban Design Workshop. Please see the summary of findings below!


EVENT SUMMARY
Date: April 8th, 2019  |  6-8pm 
Location: Woodside Houses Community Center  |  Woodside, Queens
Attendance: 35

This workshop focused on the urban design, or the “look and feel”, of Sunnyside Yard. An opening presentation was led by Skyler Bisom-Rapp of Project for Architecture & Urbanism and James Johnson-Piett of Urbane Development. In addition to reviewing community engagement and the opportunities and challenges presented by a potential Sunnyside Yard development, the presentation discussed how the design team is approaching programming on the Yard, access to the deck, and gave an overview of floor area ratio and how it relates to building density. See here for the full presentation.

After the presentation, attendees broke into small groups. Each group discussed the uses and programs they would like to see at Sunnyside Yard, as well as how the Yard should be accessed from street level. They then participated in mapping activities to indicate their preferences on building heights, density, and access points. Finally, a representative from each group shared a summary of the activities and discussion.

 
Key Findings from activities and small group discussions:

  1. SSY should fit in seamlessly with the surrounding neighborhoods. This means that high-rise buildings should be located closer to LIC and low-rise buildings should be built closer to Sunnyside.  

  2. There is an opportunity to build higher-density buildings around transit hubs and major north/south connectors to make use of existing transportation nodes.  

  3. Design solutions to access SSY should be a blend of stairs, elevators, escalators, ramps, and rolling hills to fit in with the surrounding context. Each access point should offer an ADA accessible option.  

  4. There is an opportunity for SSY to rethink affordability and ownership of housing and space. There was interest in exploring deeper, permanent levels of affordability, including NYCHA-type housing, and exploring community-based ownership structures like community land trust models.

  5. SSY must incorporate mixed use scenarios that blend housing, commercial, retail, and community spaces to fit the needs of the new community and existing residents of the surrounding neighborhoods.  

  6. Specific programming preferences include: 

  • Parks and greenery to anchor the site 

  • Hospital or medical center  

  • Schools for all ages 

  • Industrial/light manufacturing to create job pipeline for residents 

  • Arts/culture as a major tenant and attraction  

  • Affordable housing for all residents  

  • Pilot for green infrastructure and other sustainability efforts  

  • Transportation hub that connects major rail nodes, MTA, and BRT  

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Second Public Meeting of the Sunnyside Yard Master Plan
Mar
26
6:00 PM18:00

Second Public Meeting of the Sunnyside Yard Master Plan

  • PS 166 Q Henry Gradstein Elementary School (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

Thank you to the 150+ people who joined us at the second Public Meeting of the Sunnyside Yard Master Planning process. See here for a full English summary of the event and below for translated summaries and all of the presentations that were shared!

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