QUEENS — The city is planning to transform a run-down Jamaica garage into a development that would include affordable housing and retail, as part of its goal to revitalize the long-overlooked neighborhood, officials said.
The city's Economic Development Corporation will soon release a request for proposals in an effort to develop the 45,000-square-foot site on 168th Street, between Jamaica and Archer avenues, Kyle Kimball, president of the agency, announced at a recent community event in Jamaica.
The agency tried to revitalize the site seven years ago, but the developers were hampered by the recession, the city said.
Sources familiar with the site said that it can accommodate about 300 apartments.
The city said the planned development would include affordable housing as well as some market-rate units and retail space.
Kimball made the announcement during a city-organized workshop on Saturday, during which residents and business owners had a chance to submit their ideas about how to improve their neighborhood.
The recommendations from the workshop, officials said, will be taken into consideration as the city is working on an "action plan" for Jamaica in an attempt to re-energize the neighborhood.
“The 168th Street site holds powerful potential to serve the neighborhood with affordable housing and other amenities," EDC spokesman Ian Fried wrote in an email.
At this point it's impossible to say how many affordable units will be included in the proposed development, officials said.
In 2007, the city also released an RFP seeking to develop the site. But the agency said that the request didn’t work out at the time because of the recession.
The selected developers were affected by the crisis and were not able to continue the project, the agency said.
Several new developments have already been planned for the neighborhood, which once succumbed to crime and neglect, but is now becoming a vibrant hub again with a number of new apartment buildings and hotels.
“The future of Jamaica is already in motion,” EDC tweeted Saturday.