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Plan to Expand Roosevelt Avenue BID Abandoned Due to Lack of Public Support

By Katie Honan | January 27, 2017 3:56pm | Updated on January 30, 2017 8:46am
 The plan was to expand the district down to Corona on Roosevelt Avenue. 
The plan was to expand the district down to Corona on Roosevelt Avenue. 
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82nd Street Partnership

JACKSON HEIGHTS — Officials have quietly ended their plan to expand the 82nd Street business improvement district to Roosevelt Avenue after officials felt it didn't have enough public support, according to two sources familiar with the process.

The Jackson Heights-Corona BID, also known as Roosevelt Avenue BID, was near completion, with ballots from residents and business owners in, when it was shut down late in 2016, one source said.

It would have been the city's largest BID, but a number of residents and business owners spoke out against the plan, fearing they would be pushed out of the neighborhood. Its final vote had been delayed multiple times since it was first announced in 2013. 

A source said Councilwoman Julissa Ferreras-Copeland, who was leading the charge to expand the BID as a way to improve Roosevelt Avenue, felt the project didn't have the local support it needed to move forward.

Ferreras-Copeland's office declined to comment. 

An official for the city's Department of Small Business Services, which handles the BID process, declined to comment. And Leslie Ramos, the 82nd St. BID's director, also did not respond to an email seeking comment. 

Another source confirmed the committee handling the BID process did not have the majority support from business owners, which is required for it to pass.

Tania Mattos, from Queens Neighborhoods United, said her group applauded the decision to abandon the plan. 

"Most of all, we are proud of and commend all community members especially the small business owners, vendors and workers for coming together to defend our community and what we built," she said in a statement.

"Roosevelt Avenue is not for sale."

The end of the BID was first mentioned in a New York Times article about Terraza 7, an Elmhurst Latin jazz club that is closing. Its owner, Freddy Castiblanco, has been outspoken against the BID plan.