New York City has signed an agreement with Queens Development Group, a joint venture (JV) between Sterling Equities and Related Companies, for a $3bn project to redevelop the Willets Point neighbourhood of Queens, New York, US.
The JV will be responsible for mixed-use development that will be over five million ft², including retail, entertainment and housing to help transform the area into a new neighbourhood.
Queens Development will purchase an initial 23-acre site in the Special Willets Point District to the east of Citi Field to create a retail and entertainment centre in the first phase.
In this phase, the developers will invest $1bn for a mall development called Willets West, which will be built by converting a stadium parking lot into a one million ft² retail and entertainment centre.
Willets West will feature 200 retail stores, movie theatres, restaurants, entertainment venues, a parking structure and surface parking space for 2,500 cars, and public spaces to host year-round programming.
The first phase of development will also create 4.5 million ft² of mixed-use development featuring 2,500 housing units, 35% of which will be affordable, as well as 900,000ft² of street-level retail and 500,000ft² of office space.
It will also include a 280-room hotel, five acres of public space and 30,000ft² of retail and restaurants along 126th Street.
The 126th Street development will also create an interim 20-acre surface parking area that will be converted to recreational space for 183 days of the year.
The car park’s recreational uses could include modular athletic fields and community open spaces designed by the architects of Citi Field.
The city has bought out 95% of the land needed to proceed with the project, which is expected to be completed in three phases over the next nine years.
Image: New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg announces the agreement between New York City and Queens Development Group to redevelop Willets Point. Photo: Edward Reed.