A glance at this week’s news proves that the time is now for the city to invest in Queens as businesses—big and small—are eyeing real estate in the borough.
Kansas-based Alphapointe—a nonprofit that trains and employs blind people—announced that it will move out of its current location in Brooklyn to a new spot in Richmond Hill. That company employs approximately 200 people and its president said that it intends to hire more once it has relocated.
In Jamaica, the former Brightpoint Health facility was rebranded as the Matilda Raffa Cuomo Health Center to honor New York’s former first lady. The rebranding coincided with the health center’s $1.4 million renovation. Sunnyside Yard is among the spots that Amazon is considering for a second headquarters known as Amazon HQ2 that would include up to eight million square feet and provide as many as 50,000 jobs, many of which would offer a salary of more than $100,000.
And Flushing banquet hall Terrace on the Park announced that it would undergo a $9 million redesign. In other words, business is booming in Queens and the city should take note.
This renewed interest in our borough drives home some of the messages that have been reiterated during this election season by candidates in Queens—the borough needs more jobs, but it also requires better transportation and upgraded infrastructure to lure the companies that will provide new employment.
Assemblyman Clyde Vanel should be commended after he recently announced efforts to upgrade the state’s tech infrastructure to ensure that residents have access to the fastest form of wireless connectivity that would enable them to better compete in the job marketplace. But this is only one aspect of making the borough friendlier to new business.
Improving the MTA’s system and patching up the borough’s pothole-ridden roads should be next on the list.
It is exciting that companies are looking to relocate to Queens. The city should continue to make the necessary improvements to ensure that the borough is a desirable place to set up shop.