To support the growth in the western Queens neighborhood, Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration announced last week an investment strategy to provide funding for schools, transportation and open space.
“We are investing $180 million in Long Island City to address the needs of today while preparing for a more sustainable future,” de Blasio said in a statement.
Interagency efforts, led by the Economic Development Corporation (EDC), began in 2015 with its Long Island City Core Neighborhood Plan. Earlier this year, city officials and Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer hosted listening sessions with civic leaders.
The result is $180 million in funding from the city, including $95 million from the Department of Environmental Protection to improve the sewer system and water mains, $60 million for a new school in Court Square and $10 million to reconstruct the streets in Hunter’s Point.
The last $15 million will go to open space improvements at Queensbridge Baby Park, Old Hickory Playground, Bridge and Tunnel Park and to Court Square.
“For Long Island City to continue to be a livable community, there must be a massive infusion of infrastructure dollars now,” Van Bramer said in a statement. “They investments being announced today are necessary and welcome, but they also are just the beginning.”
The investment strategy outlines ways to strengthen the Central Business District, preserve and build mixed-income housing, invest in street improvements for safer connections and enhance resiliency.
It also focuses on improving park space, expanding classroom seats for the growing neighborhood and strengthening arts and culture.
Elizabeth Lusskin, president of the LIC Partnership, said in a statement that the $180 million investment was urgently needed.
“We cannot continue to be a regional hub of housing, jobs, culture and industry without the significant upgrades to our core infrastructure,” she said. “This Investment Strategy culminated several years of dialog, but also lays the groundwork for future collective planning.”