Long Island City Business Improvement District Annual Report

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1 Long Island City Business Improvement District Annual Report

2 A MESSAGE FROM THE CHAIR AND EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Dear BID Members, This year, the BID celebrates its 10th anniversary, and with it, brings new and enhanced supplemental services to the district and welcomes significant new development. The LIC Business Improvement District helps make the neighborhood s mixed-use core more attractive and inviting, and plays an integral role in the explosive transformation in the area. The BID also works closely with its parent organization and marketing arm, the Long Island City Partnership, to host events, assist businesses throughout the area and effectively promote and brand Long Island City both within the neighborhood and to the city at large. There are many accomplishments to celebrate over the past year, with new services made possible from the approved $425,000 budget, and more exciting things to look forward to in the year ahead. In the following pages, highlights and successes from the year are showcased, including some of the BID s new programs. Ambassador Services were initiated this year in order to help newcomers, visitors and regulars feel more welcome, and become better familiarized with attractions and services in the district. In addition, two informational kiosks were deployed this spring, which provide maps, brochures and other materials to promote local happenings. We strengthened relationships this year with the Department of Transportation, the Department of Parks and Recreation, the Department of Small Business Services and our two terrific Police Precincts, to work with them on issues related to safety, maintenance and signage. We enhanced our business assistance services, and worked to give our businesses better access to agency programs. To brighten the district for the winter months, we partnered with JetBlue to bring festive lighting to Queens Plaza. We also enhanced the Queens Plaza streetscape by purchasing and placing high-end trash cans with LIC Partnership/BID decals throughout the corridor matching the attractive street furniture aesthetic already on Jackson Avenue and bringing more consistency to the district. The BID also began providing supplemental graffiti removal and street furniture painting this year, and has cleaned nearly 100 incidents to date. Safety and wayfinding continue to improve, and the BID was happy to introduce new print maps through the WalkNYC program this past year. We are also working hard to improve transportation in and around the BID, including better signage at key Queens Plaza intersections. We have ramped up our retail marketing efforts, working with our Retail Committee, creating new maps showing density of development and taking a booth at the ICSC Conference at the Javits Center. We also worked with ICSC to hold their first Queens event in the BID last October. We are developing a new rendering that will show the area with all of the projects currently underway as built out. We continue to maintain up-to-date development data and mapping, adding new resources with more to come. Meanwhile, the larger LIC area continues to undergo a parallel transformation, and the BID has continued to work with area stakeholders to create a new subdistrict to bring supplemental services and placemaking improvements to the Vernon-Jackson-44th Drive corridors. We look forward to working with all of the members of the BID, and our partners and neighbors in the area, in the year ahead! Sincerely, Elizabeth Lusskin President, LIC Partnership David Brause Chairman, LIC BID

3 LIC Business Improvement District The Long Island City Business Improvement District (LIC BID), created in 2005, provides targeted services for LIC s primary commercial core - encompassing all properties along Queens Plaza North and Queens Plaza South from 21st Street to Jackson Avenue/Northern Boulevard, and along Jackson Avenue from Queens Plaza South to 45th Avenue/Thomson Avenue. Managed by LIC Partnership, the LIC BID supports the organization s larger mission of advocating for economic development that benefits Long Island City s industrial, commercial, cultural, and residential sectors. The goal is to attract new businesses to LIC, retain those already in the neighborhood, welcome new residents and visitors, and promote a vibrant and authentic mixed-use community. Highlights of the past year include: Launched ambassador and visitor services programs Initiated monthly graffiti removal services Installed two informational kiosks in the district with LIC maps, brochures and guides Purchased attractive trash cans for the Queens Plaza corridor Worked with DOT on transportation improvements for the district and beyond Produced and distributed WalkNYC print maps with NYCDOT Executed a targeted retail attraction program Developed collateral to track new development in the area Worked with stakeholders to expand the BID along additional key corridors in LIC Supported public art events and cultural programs in vacant spaces Expanded Partnership Perks to include more than 90 businesses and 15,000+ cardholders Welcomed new commercial tenants & restaurants Oriented new employees, students, residents and visitors to the district Experienced decreases in crime within the 114th and 108th precincts

4 Core Services Supplemental Sanitation The BID works with Atlantic Maintenance Corporation to keep the district clean and attractive. Five fulltime sanitation workers help keep the district clean 7 days a week. Approximately 8,764 service hours were logged for service over the past year and approximately 72,000 trash bags were filled. With an especially snowy season, the BID provided additional salting and clearing of the crossings within the district. This year, the BID is amplified sanitation services by providing pro-active monthly graffiti removal and street furniture painting. Over the past year, approximately 95 incidences of graffiti and street furniture touch-ups have been completed. As foot traffic increases in the quickly-changing district, these additional services have helped keep the area as clean and attractive as possible. Public Safety & Visitor Services With the influx of new residents, employees and visitors staying in the larger area s 25 hotels, in addition to lighting and streetscape improvements to enhance the pedestrian environment, crime has not only dropped in recent years - the district feels more comfortable, safe and welcoming than ever. In response to these changing conditions, an Ambassador program was launched in the fall and again this spring to provide visitor-oriented services. In addition to servicing the two new informational kiosks, ambassador representatives have distributed maps, brochures, directions and other information about the area to many who pass through the district while interacting with local merchants. This has proven to be an effective way to help promote all that LIC has to offer, while also keeping an eye on any sanitation and security related issues on the street. In addition, the BID hosts meetings with district merchants and Commanding Officers of the 108th and 114th Precincts, so that any concerns or questions can be shared, and expeditiously addressed. Maintenance & Beautifi cation The BID helps maintain the streetscape and beautification improvements recently completed as part of an $80 million capital program. The renovation of Queens Plaza has revitalized the pedestrian environment by introducing greenery, attractive medians, added seating and a new 1.5 acre park, Dutch Kills Green. This spring, the Queens Plaza Improvements Project was recognized with an Award of Excellence by the Center for Active Design. This year, we purchased trash cans for Queens Plaza, replacing the smaller and less attractive wire bins provided by DSNY. The bins are branded with LIC Business Improvement District decals, matching the ones on Jackson Avenue. The BID maintains the landcaped medians, benches and trash cans along Jackson Avenue directly, and works with the Parks Department to maintain the Queens Plaza Improvements. The BID has made other upgrades along the corridor over the past year including improving the attractiveness of the tree pits on both corridors. Special thanks to the following companies who have pledged additional support annually to sponsor the maintenance of these improvements:

5 Marketing, Events & Other Programs The LIC BID and Partnership are welcoming new companies, employees, residents and visitors to the neighborhood - and offering our services. Over the past year, we have prepared presentations for company and hotel staff on area restaurants and amenities. We visit with businesses often, and offer assistance on issues they may be having, or coordinate with the appropriate city agencies. We also work with NYC & Company, the city s official marketing and tourism organization to promote LIC as a visitor destination, both through the press and through presentations we provide to tour operators. We offer informational meetings and tours for area employees, as well as for those seeking to invest in Long Island City, and those working on policy initiatives. LIC has received significant positive press in the past year, most heavily focusing on the booming residential and commercial real estate markets, innovative local companies and outstanding cultural and dining offerings. For links to recent press, visit: Through the LIC Partnership umbrella, numerous events have been hosted in the past year. LIC Summit LIC Now: Perspectives and Prospects 6/17/14 Summer Networking Night at LIC Landing 7/23/14 Annual Trade Show & Luncheon 11/13/14 Industrial & Comm. Incentives + Financing Breakfast 1/30/15 Networking Night at Mundo 2/19/15 Annual Real Estate Breakfast 4/22/15 LIC Springs! 5/9/15 LIC BID Annual Meeting 5/27/15 Upcoming: LIC Summit 6/23/15 In addition to the events we host, we have supported and promoted community events throughout the year, and partnered on events such as the LIC Flea & Food, the LIC YMCA s wine-tasting fundraiser, Next Top Makers, LIC Arts Open, US Open and Open House New York to share information about the neighborhood. For a full listing of neighborhood events, visit: Digital Communications Our digital outreach has grown significantly over the past year. We promote area businesses and happenings daily through our website and social media platforms, while our weekly newsletter delivers the information directly to thousands of recipients. Our online presence has grown over the past year. Newsletter: 12,000 (up from 11,000) Facebook: 1,134 (up from 678) *67% growth Twitter: 2,392 (up from 1,383) *73% growth Instagram: 828 (up from 349) *138% growth

6 Street Banners & Promotion The BID manages hundreds of street banners installed with the support and sponsorship of area businesses and organizations. The banners help brighten the streets, orient pedestrians, and promote a sense of pride for the neighborhood. The past year s banners incorporated the slogans Live, Work, Visit and Create, which will soon be recycled into business card holders (by local company First World Trash) as the new banners are installed. The new campaign incorporates the slogan Make it Here, Make it Yours with icons pictured representing the diversity of things made inthe area, whether that be your product, your home, your mark or your evening. The BID serves as the community partner for WalkNYC signage placed throughout the district and beyond. The signage effectively helps orient pedestrians in the neighborhood and encourages exploration of the many destinations and attractions that LIC has to offer. This year, we worked with NYCDOT to produce WalkNYC print maps. To date, over 2,500 maps have been distributed to hotels, cultural institutions and elsewhere in the neighborhood. Sponsorship opportunities are available for the maps. Please contact us to learn more. Partnership Perks is a neighborhood discount program designed to give businesses an opportunity to promote themselves through special deals. The program has grown to include more than 85 participating businesses with more than 15,000 cards in distribution. Over the past year, we ve partnered with local organizations and developers to distribute the Perks widely, including in welcome packets to the new UOVO employees and customized cards to incoming residents of both QLIC and of Hunters Point South. In addition, we created postcards designed to act as temporary Perks cards, so that guests at area hotels and those visiting the neighborhood short-term can still access the deals.

7 Neighborhood Growth Our website is a go-to resource for information about the district and updates on new development in the greater area. With the help of the BID s Retail Committee, new strategies for attracting amenities and services have been launched this year including new graphic materials and data tracking tools. Visit: for the latest information. Several new projects have progressed this year in the district including new mixed-use, commercial, and hotel construction. UOVO opened their headquarters on Queens Plaza North in late 2014, bringing 40 new employees. The Hilton Garden Inn opened at st Avenue this spring, and with its 183 hotel rooms brings the total room count in LIC over 2,400. Adjacent to it at Queens Plaza North, a Marriott Hotel and Residences is under construction with its building design by Handel Architects. At Jackson Avenue, construction continues on an Aloft Hotel. Ekstein Development, MNS and L+M Development opened and quickly leased 98 residential units at Jackson Avenue in the fall of 2014, with a new retail tenant expected soon. World- Wide Group will open QLIC, a 421-unit building at th Street this summer, with an 8,700 square foot retail amenity. Rockrose Development Corporation began construction their 974-unit building at Hunter Street, which will have nearly 20,000 square feet of retail and Tishman Speyer broke ground on an 1,800 unit development on the north end of Jackson Avenue. Simon Baron Development began a 43-story mixed-use building at Northern Boulevard this spring, which will also have ground floor retail, and Meadow Partners continues their conversion and renovation of Crescent Street, also with significant retail. Construction is expected to begin soon at Queens Plaza South and Jackson Avenue for two mixed-use properties developed by NY Lions Group. The recently landmarked Clock Tower building will soon be joined by a 77-story project by Property Markets Group as part of a development with the adjacent property, and incorporating the existing historic structure Average Weekday Subway Ridership 21st St. Queensbridge (F): 8,914 per day (1.7% increase from 2013) Court Square (E,M,G,7): 22,433 per day (9.7% increase from 2013) Queens Plaza (E,M,R): 10,125 per day (4.4% increase from 2013) Queensboro Plaza (N,Q,7): 11,554 per day (3.8% increase from 2013) Residential Development Total units completed in LIC since 2006: 8, Condominiums: approximately 2,200 - Rental apartments: approximately 6,400 Units in planning/construction: 22,500+ Queens Plaza/Court Square sub-area - Units completed: 2, Units in planning/construction: 9,700+ Hunters Point sub-area - Units completed: 6,450 - Units in planning/construction: 4,350 Hotel Development Hotels opened since 2008: 20 Hotels currently operating: 25 Hotels in planning/construction: 26 Current hotel rooms: 2,482 Type of Development 11,000 units Recent and Planned Development in LIC N Completed Residential / since 2007 Hotel / Q R 1,000 units / Planned or under construction 1 million sqft E G Per Dot 100 units 100K sqft 100 rooms F 1,700 rooms 2.2 million sqft M 4,300 units 2,500 rooms 11,600 units Q N 2.4 million sqft 7 7 M R E F

8 Measuring Priorities Financials Queens Plaza/Court Square District Management Association Inc. Statement of Activities for the Year Ended June 30, 2014 Audited Financial Statement Net Assets Assessments $ 400,000 Contributions for Maintenance $ 19,000 Interest Income $ 529 Other income $ 1,312 TOTAL SUPPORT AND REVENUES $420,841 Expenses Program Services $ 383,048 Supportive Services Management & General $ 49,674 TOTAL EXPENSES $432,722 CHANGE IN NET ASSETS ($11,881) ANNUAL RELEASE FROM NYCEDC RESERVE $ 10,000 Total Net Income $ 1,881 NET ASSETS - BEGINNING OF YEAR $ 365,232 NET ASSETS - END OF YEAR $ 356,133 *The complete audited financial statement is available at the LIC Partnership website. *FY 2015 projections and plans for the FY 2016 budget and presented at the Annual Meeting. ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////// FISCAL YEAR 2014 CONTRACTS Sanitation and Ambassador Pilot Phase I Atlantic Maintenance Corporation 154 Conover Street Brooklyn, NY Ambassador Pilot Phase II The Fortune Society Northern Boulevard Long Island City, NY Street Banners Titan Park Avenue, Suite 610 New York, NY Jackson Avenue Median Maintenance McNulty Outdoors 640 5th Avenue New Hyde Park, NY Queens Plaza Maintenance NYC Dept. of Parks and Recreation The Arsenal, Central Park 830 Fifth Avenue New York, NY 10065

9 Looking Ahead... Based on survey results, feedback throughout the year, and the needs of the district continue to evolve and change as the area grows, we are excited to launch new programs and services. Some of the BID s plans for the coming year include: Expand ambassador service and visitor attraction programs Work to create further lighting enhancements to the area Widely distribute WalkNYC neighborhood maps Develop new retail attraction collateral Continue working with area stakeholders to expand the boundaries of the BID Welcome new companies, employees, students and residents Work with NYCDOT to improve pedestrian, bike and vehicular networks Support the launch of Bike Share in LIC Lead walking tours, presentation and orientations to promote LIC businesses and attractions Continue to improve toos for maintaining demographic and development data to support new investment Launch new programs and community events to engage with new residents

10 Long Island City BID Board of Directors Class A - Property Owners Michelle Adams Tishman Speyer Craig Axelrod Emmy Homes David Brause, Chair Brause Realty Patricia Dunphy, Vice Chair Rockrose Development Corporation Vivian Meyers Gotham Realty Edward Piccinich SL Green Realty Corp. Marcello Porcelli LargaVista Companies Carlos Salmon Jr. Allan Briteway Electrical Contractors Inc. Alan Suna, Treasurer Bridge Plaza Associates Gretchen Werwaiss, Secretary Werwaiss & Co., Inc. Class B - Commercial Tenants Denise Arbesu Citibank N.A. Gary Kesner, Nominations Chair Silvercup Studios James Pileski The Burger Garage, LLC Paul Hanau MetLife Martin St. George JetBlue Airways Corporation Class D - Elected Officials Office of the Mayor Patrick Cammack, NYC Dept. of Small Business Services Office of the Comptroller Brian Cook, Office of Comptroller Scott Stringer Office of the Borough President Shurn Anderson, Office of Borough President Melinda Katz City Council Member Matthew Wallace, Office of Council Majority Leader Jimmy Van Bramer Class E - Non-Voting Members Queens Community Board 1 Vincio Donato Queens Community Board 2 Patrick O Brien LIC Partnership Staff Elizabeth Lusskin Executive Director, LIC BID/President, LIC Partnership x22 Dana Frankel Director of Economic Dev., Planning and BID Services x30 Jean Lateef Director of Fiscal Operations x28 Jenna Petok Director of Marketing & Events x27 Joe Sciortino Director of Comm. & Industrial Business Assistance x32 Skyler Yost Project Coordinator x33 Charles Yu Manager of Business Assistance x32 Ying Huang Office Manager

11 Get Connected to Long Island City Partnership

12 We are eager to assist any business that now calls Long Island City home, or would like to move here in the future. For more information about the Long Island City BID, please contact us: Queens Plaza North, 9th Floor Long Island City, NY x30

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