“Good jobs and affordable housing will be a reality in Astoria Cove thanks to Mayor Bill de Blasio, Queens Borough President Melinda Katz, Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and Councilman Costa Constantinides’s leadership,” said Build Up NYC President Gary LaBarbera. “We are proud to stand with them today and look forward to continue working with them and the rest of the City Council to ensure responsible development strengthens our communities.”
Build Up NYC to attain good jobs in Astoria Cove as City Council’s Land Use Committee votes to approve project
“Alma Realty has agreed to create good jobs for all construction, building maintenance and security workers in Astoria Cove. We encourage the developer to continue working with all stakeholders to meet the community’s affordable housing and infrastructure needs, and we commend Councilman Costa Constantinides for standing firm on the needs of his constituency and of working families across the city.”
The NYC Council’s Subcommittee on Zoning and Franchises held a hearing on October 20 to discuss Alma Realty’s proposed development of Astoria Cove, where hundreds of construction, building maintenance and security jobs are expected to be created. Alma Realty has an opportunity to make sure these are good, safe jobs with priority hiring for local residents and opportunities for local businesses, but hasn’t made a commitment to do so. Despite some conversations with Alma, there still isn’t an agreement for either the construction or building service workers that guarantees us that Astoria Cove will create good jobs that benefit our community.
Build Up NYC President Gary LaBarbera said, “We are urging the New York City Council to give Alma Realty the red light and vote no on their proposed development of Astoria Cove as it stands. Alma Realty should not be granted permission to develop Astoria Cove until they commit to the good jobs and affordable housing working families need in Astoria and across the city.”
Councilman Constantinides Writes to City Planning Commission for Responsible Development in Astoria Cove
In response to appeals by members of Build Up NYC for Alma Realty to adhere to responsible development practices in their proposed construction project in Astoria Cove, Councilmember Costa Constantinides issued a compelling statement to the City Planning Commission that illustrates many of Build Up’s fundamental concerns regarding the endeavor.
Citing reports of rising sea levels in New York City and the ever-present threat of another superstorm like Sandy, members of Build Up NYC attempted to pass out “Climate Change Survival Kits” to the Brooklyn Bridge Park Corporation board to highlight the importance of a new environmental review for Pier 6.
Members of Build Up NYC testified on the growing concern over possible environmental contaminants in Astoria Cove. The developer’s own Draft Environmental Impact Study states there may be asbestos, PCBs and other hazardous materials present on the development site.
Working men and women of Build Up NYC urged the Queens Borough President to recommend that the project should not proceed, unless the developer ensures good jobs at Astoria Cove that provide fair wages, retirement and health insurance benefits for construction, maintenance, operations and security workers. These should include jobs that provide state-approved training and apprenticeship programs so that work is done safely.
Community Board 1 voted on June 17 to disapprove Alma Realty’s proposed development in Astoria Cove, four-tower development would include almost 1,700 residential units, a public school and retail space, including a supermarket, with recommendations.