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Opportunity and optimism in eastern Queens –

Right here in Queens, New York Metropolis’s largest borough, discovering a spot to construct one thing new generally is a problem.

However the crises of our day aren’t ready for us to seek out the house we have to tackle them. Increasing our inexpensive housing inventory, creating new leisure areas and including faculty seats in overcrowded districts require it, however house is at such a premium in the “World’s Borough.” For Queens to be the true reside, work and play borough we all know it may be for our households, we should embrace alternatives to suppose past the abnormal and be inventive in our strategy to group improvement.

One probably promising piece of the puzzle is the Creedmoor campus in eastern Queens. Underutilized for many years, this 50+ acre web site of state-owned land might be a recreation changer towards making progress on housing creation, faculty overcrowding and open house.

This land, on a superblock sandwiched between Union Turnpike and Hillside Avenue, is a part of the Creedmoor Psychiatric Middle, which has supplied companies to sufferers with psychological sickness for over a century. Within the Fifties, Creedmoor housed upwards of seven,000 sufferers. However deinstitutionalization and medical advances led to a major lower in Creedmoor’s inpatient inhabitants, ensuing in a dramatic discount of the hospital’s energetic footprint on the positioning.

Whereas some parts of the campus have been bought off, over 50 acres — occupied by 20 decaying, principally vacant buildings — stay in public arms. The place others may even see blight and vacancy, we see the boundless potential to examine a vibrant future for this land and the communities it serves.

The redevelopment of Creedmoor has the potential to be a driving drive for complete reinvestment throughout eastern Queens, fueling important initiatives comparable to financial improvement, job creation, mass transit enhancements and infrastructure upgrades. This land represents alternatives for inexpensive housing, new faculty building, neighborhood retail, open areas, efficiency venues and far more. This generally is a transformative alternative for the whole group and could make a significant impression on the lives of its residents and companies.

The alternatives introduced by the Creedmoor web site are huge, however it’s essential that any redevelopment is pushed by the enter and participation of the group. The voices of residents from Bellerose, Queens Village and surrounding neighborhoods should be heard loud and clear by incorporating their concepts and addressing their issues. In doing so, we are able to make sure that any potential plan for revitalizing the Creedmoor web site is a real reflection of the group’s wants and aspirations.

Because of this our respective places of work have partnered to place collectively a sequence of group visioning workshops over the following few weeks, starting this Thursday, Feb. 2, at 7 p.m. at P.S./I.S. 208, to listen to from eastern Queens residents about what they need to see flower from this plot of promise. These workshops will present a possibility for residents of eastern Queens to share their concepts and visions for the potential improvement of the Creedmoor web site and flip it right into a vibrant and thriving group for all. For details about future workshops, go to

Creedmoor’s redevelopment generally is a linchpin for strengthening eastern Queens. We now have a once-in-a-lifetime alternative to forge a greater Queens for ourselves and for future generations. Let’s profit from it.

Hope Knight is president of Empire State Growth and Donovan Richards is borough president of Queens.

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