The area along Long Island City’s waterfront started to really take off as a residential neighborhood just five or so years ago and, really, it hasn’t slowed down since. A nice mixture of spanking new, amenities-laden development, plus plenty of historic industrial character, plus a burgeoning food and nightlife scene, AND plenty of local cultural options, of both the grass roots as well as the major-museum-backed variety, LIC has quickly turned into one of the city’s most desireable communities. And things are about to change around here even more.
Last week it was announced that LIC’s cultural anchor, the great MoMA PS1 (home to, among many other things, NYC best dance party Warm Up!, pictured above), will receive $3 million in city money to purchase the lot adjacent to its current location. Though PS1 isn’t saying yet what they plan on building in the spot–maybe they’ll move all the office space over there, freeing up more room for art in the main building?–whatever it is will significantly increase the museum’s footprint in the neighborhood. And LIC’s commitment to culture continues, with The Chocolate Factory Theater getting $1,700,000 in expansion funds, the Noguchi Museum receiving $600,000 to buy a new generator (Sandy destroyed the old one), the same amount going to the Queens Public Library, and $300,000 earmarked for the LIC Sculpture Center.
Going from arts to leisure, Long Island City’s fabulous waterfront area is going get even more pretty, more stroll-worthy, more relaxing. Because although the second phase of development along the river has only just begun–in fact, the city’s still seeking bids for some of the work–the 11-acre park is slated to open to the public this month. Specifics about the space are still pretty vague, but judging from the renderings from Weis/Manfreddi, Thomas Balsley, and ARUP, the Hunters Point South Waterfront Park looks like it will be a fantastic addition to the neighborhood.