By ANGELA MONTEFINISE
variety of new people, places and things popped up in Queens during
the past year, bombarding the borough with a list of “new bests.”
Queens addition is looking to reserve a space in the borough’s
history book, whether they do it with their badges, their businesses
or their bats.
is a look at some of the borough’s Best New Additions, which have
arrived in Queens in a big way.
Flushing Mall has given Queens
a new place to gather and shop.
Photo by Ira Cohen
residents got a new place to shop this year with the opening of Flushing Mall in
December. The two-story mall, which is located between 39th Avenue, 37th Avenue,
Prince Street and College Point Boulevard in Flushing, features a wide variety
of small shops, a colorful and modern shopping atmosphere, a peaceful fountain
and a diverse and delicious food court. The mall, which opened with many Asian
specialty stores, welcomed a Steve
Madden store there in May. In June, Governor George Pataki and several other
politicians opened the City’s first Empire State Development Community Network
Office in the mall, which will work to help local businesses in the area. An
office will open in each borough, but the Queens office was the first.
Jamaica Multiplex opened in May with hopes of attracting nighttime
business to the area.
Tribune Photo by Ira Cohen
Screens Mean Big Change in Jamaica
shopping in Jamaica can now sit back, relax and catch a movie at the new
15-screen Jamaica Multiplex movie complex that opened in downtown Jamaica this
year. The Greater Jamaica Development Corporation hopes the theater, which
opened in May, will anchor a rebirth of Jamaica that will include the future
opening of the $82 million Jamaica Center One Shopping Center. The movie theater
will provide approximately 400 jobs for local residents, and will keep the
neighborhood hopping at night, when stores are closed and the neighborhood
becomes quiet and desolate.
welcomed Helen Marshall as its new Borough President in January.
Photo by Ira Cohen
of the Guard
14 of Queens’ City Councilmembers were term-limited out of office this past
November, opening the door to 14 fresh faces. The following politicians became
the borough’s brand new City Council representatives, and have been working
hard on all issues, from the potholes to the budget:
Tony Avella (District 19): Avella worked as a civic leader in College Point for
over 30 years, and won the closest City Council race in the City to represent
John Liu (District 20): Liu was president of the North Flushing Civic
Association and a member of Community Board 7 before being elected the first
Asian in the City Council.
Hiram Monserrate (District 21): A former police officer, Monserrate worked as a
civic leader before being nominated the first Hispanic City Council member from
Peter Vallone, Jr. (District 22): Vallone Jr., son of former City Council
Speaker and District 22 Councilman Peter Vallone, took over for his dad in
November after working as a lawyer and advocate against power plants in Astoria.
David Weprin (District 23): Weprin acted as partner in a law firm before
representing District 23 and being named chair of the City Council’s Finance
Committee – the most important Council position after speaker. By winning his
election, Weprin joined his late father Saul and his brother Mark in the
Jim Gennaro (District 24): A professor of politics at Queens College and a civic
activist, Gennaro won an upset victory over the Democratic Party’s candidate
in November to become a City Councilman.
Helen Sears (District 25): Sears worked a civic activist and a health
professional before winning her election, which was one of the most contested in
Eric Gioia (District 26): The young and vibrant Gioia worked at the White House
for Vice President Al Gore and acted as a civic leader before representing
District 26, which his family – both the Gioias and Nunziatos – has deep
Leroy Comrie (District 27): Comrie worked as chief-of-staff to his predecessor
Archie Spigner before taking over for him this November and being named chairman
of the Council’s Rules Committee.
Allan Jennings (District 28): Jennings was a mortgage broker and a civic
activist before winning an upset victory over the Democratic Party’s candidate
in District 28.
Melinda Katz (District 29): Katz worked as head of community boards under former
Borough President Claire Shulman before taking over for former Councilwoman
Karen Koslowitz in District 29.
Dennis Gallagher (District 30): The lone Republican member of the Queens City
Council delegation, Gallagher worked as chief of staff to former Councilman Tom
Ognibene before taking over for him.
James Sanders (District 31): Sanders, who beat the Democratic Party’s
candidate to represent District 31, was a member of School Board 29 before
becoming a member of the City Council.
Joe Addabbo, Jr. (District 32): Addabbo Jr. followed in the footsteps of his
late father to launch a career in politics, after working as a lawyer and
community activist in the Rockaways.
15 years as the borough’s top politician, Borough President Claire Shulman
left her position to make way for new blood in the form Helen Marshall, a former
City Councilwoman who became the borough’s first African American Borough
President. She also became the second woman to hold the position in the
baseman Roberto Alomar
was a new addition to the
New York Mets for the 2002 season.
Photo by Ira Cohen
in the Ringers
New York Mets, Queens’ favorite team, brought in a bunch of new players this
year to help them rise to the top of their division and Major League Baseball.
Although the new acquisitions have had trouble adjusting to Shea, the future
looks bright for the Amazins with All-Stars Mo Vaughn, Roberto Alomar, and
Jeromy Burnitz in the line-up and pitchers Shawn Estes and Pedro Astacio on the
Boy in Pinstripes
New York Yankees acquired a little piece of Queens this year when relief pitcher
and College Point native Steve Karsay was brought over from the Cleveland
Indians. At presstime, Karsay was performing well for the Yanks, acting as a
middle reliever and closer when Mariano Rivera is unable to play.
Memorial in Flushing Cemetery
memorial dedicated to those who were lost and those who helped out on Sept. 11
went up in Flushing Cemetery this year, featuring a diamond-etched drawing of
the World Trade Center on a six-foot tall black marble slab. Two other large
pieces of white marble surround the black one, with words honoring rescue
workers, victims and survivors engraved in them. The memorial is the only one in
a cemetery in Queens.
the New School System
in Queens will have a new representative come September, now that the New York
City Board of Education is a thing of the past and Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s
new Panel for Education Policy is set to start. Queens Borough President Helen
Marshall gets to choose one parent member of the panel’s 13 members, and
although at presstime she was unsure of who she will pick, Queens will say hello
to someone new. The borough’s Board of Education member Terri Thompson will
not be chosen, and ended her four-year run as the borough’s education
New Face in the Assembly
of Southeast Queens Assembly District 31 were forced to say goodbye to long-time
representative Pauline Cummings in March when accomplished Assemblywoman lost
her battle with cancer. In April, members of the district elected Board of
Education lawyer and Southeast Queens native Michele Titus in a special election
to replace Cummings. Titus will be up for reelection in November.
10 years, the New York State Legislature’s Redistricting Task Force has to
redraw district lines for members of the State Senate, State Assembly and
Congress to accommodate population changes documented in the Census. This year,
after much debate and controversy, the Legislature did redraw the lines, adding
two Assembly seats, one Senate seat, combining two other Senate seats, and
removing one Congresswoman from the borough. The new lines should ensure that
every Queens resident has equal representation in government, and will go into
affect in the November 2002 elections.
Hotzler became interim president of York College.
Men On Campus
an extensive nation-wide search, the City University of New York (CUNY)
appointed a new president at Flushing’s Queens College – Dr. James Muyskens.
The philosophy professor and former Hunter College Provost was acting as Dean at
the University of Georgia before applying for the job at Queens College. He will
take over the position in the fall from Interim President Russell Hotzler, who
handled the job after President Allen Lee Sessoms resigned in 1998. CUNY
appreciated Hotzler’s good work at Queens College, and appointed him interim
president of York College in Jamaica. Former President Charles Kidd left the
position to spend more time with his family.
Floyd Flake annouced that he was beginning a new job as president of his alma
mater, Wilberforce University in Ohio.
Diversity Moving In
borough welcomed thousands of new Queens immigrants over the past decade,
according to Census figures released by the United States Census Bureau this
year, which stated that the borough’s foreign-born population has increased by
36 percent since 1990. Of the two million Queensites counted in the 2000 Census,
nearly one million of them were born outside of the United States. The most
change took place in Jackson Heights, Bellerose, and Flushing.
Gardens High School got a new track thanks to the non-profit group, Take
N. Cardozo High School in Bayside and Campus Magnet High School in Cambria
Heights both got brand new refurbished fields this year thanks to the non-profit
group Take the Field, which is funded by Time Warner and is dedicated to
improving dilapidated fields across New York City. Other Queens schools which
have received improvements through Take the Field are William Bryant High
School, Beach Channel High School, Springfield Gardens High School, Jamaica High
School and Far Rockaway High School. Bayside High School and Martin Van Buren
High School are projects that Take the Field is currently looking into.
Trib welcomed Alyssa Rose Procanyn to the family in June.
Member of The Tribune
Queens Tribune is proud to say that a member of its staff gave birth to
one of the borough’s “best additions” this year: Trib Production
Manager Lianne Procanyn welcomed little Alyssa Rose Procanyn into the world in
Gets New Leader
Queens Museum of Art (QMA) appointed a new executive director this year, when
P.S. 1 Contemporary Art Center Deputy Director Thomas Finkelpearl was given the
job in March.
In a Name?
became the first county to name a political club after President William
Jefferson Clinton this year, when Assemblyman Brian McLaughlin’s New Century
Democratic Association became the William Jefferson Clinton Democratic Club of
Good Guy in Flushing
109th Precinct in Flushing got a new Commanding Officer this year in the form of
Deputy Inspector Owen J. Monaghan, who took over for a promoted Deputy Inspector
will be the home to the Museum of Modern art until 2005.
Photo by Michael Fischthal
Art Hits Queens
Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) moved to Long Island City this year to display its
collection at the old Swingline Stapler Factory while its Manhattan home is
being renovated. The collection will be at the MoMA Queens for the next three
years, and it is unclear what will be done after that. The museum has proposed
to use the Queens building for storage, but nothing has been decided yet.
City Holds Down the Fort
New York City Fire Department received 30.9 acres of land from the Federal
government this year for use as a training facility. The Parks Department is
scheduled to receive 49.5 acres of the Fort for use as public parkland and for
space for non-profit organizations.
of the dark clouds of despair on Sept. 11 came the shining light of patriotism,
and in Queens, that meant the hanging of hundreds of American flags on homes, on
businesses and on flagpoles, including large ones in Maspeth and Bayside.
Father’s Day Heroes
were erected this year at the Fire Department’s Rescue 4 house and Ladder
Company 163’s house to remember the three firefighters who were killed in the
Father’s Day blaze that ripped through a Woodside warehouse in 2001. Both
Firefighters Harry Ford and Brian Fahey are memorialized at Rescue 4 in
Woodside, and Firefighter John Downing is memorialized at Ladder Company 163.
Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) shook up Queens straphangers this year by
creating the new V-Line, a train that runs through Western Queens on its way to
Manhattan. The reaction to the V-Line has been mixed, but the MTA continues to
Comes to Long Island City
giant Met Life moved into Long Island City this year, bringing jobs and economic
development to the industrial area. Local politicians and Community Board
members were thrilled to have the company come to Western Queens.
News for Sweet Tooths
is the new home for Krispy Kreme donuts, the company that opened a factory on
19th Avenue and 80th Street this year.
Development on the Rise
were underway this year to build a new housing complex – including a
school, community center, day care center, and boardwalk – on the long
under-developed beachfront property in Arverne.
The project, known as Arverne by the Sea, was scheduled to break ground on
New Additions We’d Like To See
a look at some things we’d like to see in Queens
in the near future
• More Mets wins
• A restored RKO Keith’s theater
• A shrine to Jerry Seinfeld at Queens College
• Casinos and hotels on Rockaway Beach
• Another amusement park in the Rockaways
• A law that alters “as of right” construction to protect the
character of neighborhoods better
• More money for CUNY schools
• A permanent memorial to Queensites lost on Sept. 11
• Another World’s Fair
• Overpasses on Queens Boulevard to make it safe
• Reasonably priced homes and apartments
• An African American Hall of Fame in Roy Wilkins Park
• Fort Totten for use by the people
• Congressmen representing Queens and not split with Brooklyn (i.e.
Anthony Weiner), Manhattan (i.e. Carolyn Maloney), the Bronx (i.e. Joseph
Crowley), and Nassau (i.e. Gary Ackerman)
• Bus lines that work
• The Olympics 2012
• A waterfront restaurant on Fort Totten
• A new vibrant middle class community thriving in Arverne
• Someone who will take responsibility for cleaning up the toxic waste
sites in Southeast Queens
• Pro football back in Queens
Air Space Museum
In Flushing Meadows?
there a plan for a prosperous future at Flushing Meadows in the air?
to a pair of planners with an eye on the sky there is.
into the skyline from Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, the towers of what was
once the New York State Pavilion feature elevators that don’t quite make
it up into the observation decks that are now home to pigeons.
ground’s-eye view from beneath the former New York State
Photo by Liz Goff
now bar the curious from entering the floor that sparked imaginations
during the 1964 World’s Fair with its mosaic of New York.
a pair of planners who are fans of the Pavilion are hoping their dream
will bring new life to the building as an air and space museum.
Aybar, an aviation professional and Queens native who now lives in
Arizona, has teamed up with Architect Frankie Campione to come up with a
new use for the former pavilion.
proximity of the Pavilion to New York’s great airports makes its
Flushing Meadows-Corona Park location a natural,” said Aybar.
worked at the Pavilion as a teenager in the 1970s when it was converted
into a roller skating rink.
artist’s rendering details what
a proposed air-space museum in
Flushing Meadows-Corona Park
could look like.
proposed renovations to transform the structure into an air and space
museum call for a spiraling glass ramp to lead down to the main floor past
suspended space capsules and aircraft – crafts like the Space Shuttle
Enterprise and a Boeing aircraft could be included, planners said.
and Campione have proposed doing away with the New York State terrazzo map
and replacing it with a new 45,000 square foot map of the Solar System and
ground and mezzanine levels of the structure could feature an exhibit
detailing the aviation history of New York, giant video screens that
feature films on aviation and its pioneers, a flight simulator and
hands-on exhibits featuring aircraft controls and cockpits.
New York State Pavilion was constructed for the 1964-1965 World’s Fair
at a cost of $12 million (a figure estimated to be close to $70 million by
today’s monetary standards).
pavilion was a gift from both the Borough of Queens and the Parks
Nelson Rockefeller authorized architect Phillip Johnson to construct what
was the to be the tallest pavilion at the Fair.
Moses, the fair’s corporation president made the decision to convert the
Pavilion into an art museum after the fair as a feature of the newly
created Flushing Meadows-Corona Park.
1967-1969 the Pavilion did serve as an art museum until 1970 when it was
transformed into a roller rink.
1970s, most of the Pavilion fell into a state of disrepair.