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Nonprofit Helping Mentally Ill Plans 7-Story Building in Downtown Jamaica

By Ewa Kern-Jedrychowska | December 30, 2016 4:35pm | Updated on January 3, 2017 8:51am
 A new building planned by Transitional Services for New York will include 44 apartment units. 
A new building planned by Transitional Services for New York will include 44 apartment units. 
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Courtesy of Transitional Services for New York

QUEENS — A nonprofit providing mental health services will break ground on a new 7-story apartment building in downtown Jamaica next week, the group said.

Transitional Services for New York, or TSINY, is planning to construct the building at 88-45 163rd St., between Hillside and 89 avenues, near the Jamaica Colosseum Mall.

Avé McCracken, of TSINY, said the building will feature 44 studio apartments, providing housing to the organization's patients (33 units) as well as low income residents from Queens (11 units).

The group, which McCracken said is helping people who struggle with mental illness “get back into community and back into their life," renovated and took over a number of buildings throughout the city in its 41-year history, but this is the first time that it’s “actually building something from the ground up,” she said.

“This is a big deal for us,” she noted, adding that the building will incorporate an innovative design.

“The façade of the building will be made of brick and custom shaped ceramic tiles in various shades of ruby that will reflect the sun and moonlight,” the organization wrote in a flier about the development, which will also feature a garden and works of Queens artists.

“It’s going to be a beautiful, beautiful building,” McCracken said.

The groundbreaking ceremony for the 28,500 square foot building slated to be completed in spring 2018, will take place next Friday, the group said.

The nonprofit selected Jamaica for the building because "there is so much revitalization that is going on there," said McCracken, referring to numerous developments, including hotels and residential buildings, planned for the neighborhood.