- Amazon is close to choosing Long Island City as one of the locations where it will place its HQ2 project, The New York Times reported on Monday evening.
- Long Island City is a neighborhood in the New York City borough of Queens, directly across the East River from Manhattan.
- It’s been built up with a large amount of new development in recent years, but certain elements of its infrastructure, like its transit and sewer systems, lag behind.
Ready or not, here Amazon comes.
The company is close to choosing Long Island City as one of the spots where it will place its HQ2 project, along with Arlington, Virginia, The New York Times reported on Monday evening. Part of the New York City borough of Queens, directly across the East River from Manhattan, Long Island City is a neighborhood in transition.
Once industrial, the neighborhood is now full of tall, glassy condo towers and attractive restaurants. Forty-one new apartment buildings have been built in the neighborhood since 2010, according to the city.
It’s still a neighborhood in transition, however, and some areas remain undeveloped. That’s most likely where Amazon plans to step in.
But, as with any area, Long Island City has its issues, many of them growing pains. All those new people moving in are straining the area’s transportation, schools, and even sewer system.
That’s according to an investment strategy that New York City released this year identifying ways to remedy those three issues.
Over the past several years, New York has set aside $46 million for sewer and water-main upgrades in Long Island City. Dramatic improvements are being proposed or are already in the works, including $60 million for a new school and a new station stop off the Long Island Rail Road, which runs through the neighborhood on its way to Penn Station. New York last week announced $180 million in new spending for improvements to Long Island City.
“We do have sewage problems,” Sheila Lewandowski, a community fixture in Long Island City, told The New York Times. “They’re backing up. If we’re going to bring in this major corporation, we better invest a lot more in infrastructure.”
Indeed, those challenges won’t go away if or when Amazon comes to town. If anything, they’ll get worse.
Read more about Amazon’s HQ2:
- Amazon made an important investment in Seattle, and it highlights a key issue for HQ2
- Amazon HQ2 candidates are going to great lengths to keep their plans secret
- HQ2 is making cities consider projects they’ve been ignoring for years — and it shows the power of Amazon
- 7 horrible things that could happen to cities if they win Amazon’s HQ2 bid
- The cities where homeowners will benefit the most if Amazon’s 2nd headquarters lands there
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