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H&M Being Considered For Building on Austin Street

By Ewa Kern-Jedrychowska | October 3, 2013 9:23am
 The building will bring about 12,000 square feet of rentable space.
The building will bring about 12,000 square feet of rentable space.
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QUEENS — An H&M store is being considered for the space in a new commercial building on Austin Street, people familiar with the plan said.

A two-story building, which will also have commercial space in its basement, is being built at 71-53 Austin St., the former site of the Alexandra boutique.

Sources said a decision has not yet been made about what retailer will move into the space, but H&M and a chain pharmacy, such as CVS, are being considered.

The building, which will bring about 12,000 square feet of rentable space and will feature large glass windows, will be completed in about four months, sources said.

The owner of the building declined to comment.

Nicole Christie, a spokeswoman for H&M, said in an email that "it is our policy to not comment on rumors."

Some residents said they were not happy with the plans. Leslie Brown, president of the Forest Hills Chamber of Commerce said that stores like H&M may increase rents in the area.

Michael Perlman, chairman of the Rego-Forest Preservation Council, said new buildings with modern designs conflict with the neighborhood’s character.

“Austin Street was designed to complement the Tudor and Old English character of the Forest Hills Gardens,” Perlman said. “I hope the remaining sites along Austin Street will be preserved, and any future storefronts of buildings will respect the historic ambiance.”