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Boys & Girls club plans to build 5-story community facility and 14-story apartment building at its 21st Street location

Feb. 15, 2017 By Hannah Wulkan

The Variety Boys and Girls Club in Astoria has outgrown its current building and is looking to expand its facilities, as well as put up a 14-story apartment building on its property to help fund its programming.

The club, located at 21-12 30th Road, plans to build a 5-story community center that will be about three times the size of the existing facility and add a mixed-use residential tower to the property as well, according to Executive Director Matthew Troy.

The new community center will provide the club with the ability to expand its programming. The organization plans to build the 14-story apartment building bordering the 21st Street side of the property.

The project is currently awaiting certification from the City Planning Commission for the residential tower and will likely break ground in the next year, Troy said.

Troy said that the funds generated from the apartment building will be used to help pay for the club’s amenities and programs. He added that the apartment building will have at least 30 percent affordable housing, and the first floor will have retail space, though the Club is still unsure what type of businesses will fill the space.

The Boys and Girls Club will own the building, Troy explained, but is still figuring out the details, such as whether it will be a rental tower and who will run the day-to-day management operations.

The Club opened its current facility in 1955, and after more than 60 years, has grown to serve about 1,200 members and their families. To keep up with demand, Troy said, the new community center will be about 100,000 square feet.

The club will go up behind the new apartment building, and though the two will likely share some entrances, they will only be loosely connected to one another, Troy said.

“We are considering how the new facility can serve as a bridge between our children’s’ passions and potential career or education opportunities. The space will be designed to accommodate programs that we hope will remain relevant for years into the future,” Troy said.

The new Club building is undergoing a community design process now with board members, staff and volunteers.

The construction phase is expected to take two to three years to complete, Troy said, though exact details are still being worked out, such as whether the club will expand on the existing building or completely demolish it and build an entirely new structure.

While undergoing construction, the club will keep its programming going.

Troy said that the club is looking to expand its presence in schools during the redevelopment, and is also looking in to leasing space to continue its most popular programming throughout the transition.

The club currently provides low-cost after school programming to more than 200 local children, and also offers swimming, fitness and skill classes, and summer camp programming to kids in the neighborhood.

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Besides the 20-30-40% affordable units, which that obviously is a pain in its own right (Go ask Related Management for that farce), it’d be nice to hold up a nice gym for weight training, and other things as well. Some people can’t afford the trip that far from their homes to work out nowadays.

But anyway, about the huge empty buildings around QBP, look around at the construction that’s going on, and look at the projects done around Hoyt Ave./21st. Now, look around at the Steinway situation that still has condos being built for people who have money. Finally, feast your eyes on the area that has people coming from the city to force the rental properties jolt up in pricing- gentrification at its finest. If it can happen in one segment of Astoria, it’ll happen in many in a blink. Where’s the affordability in that? This isn’t so much of a “boom” but more of a “burst” of expensive rentals out of nowhere. Find me a one bedroom place that’s about 1300-1400 a moth nowadays and consider yourself lucky if it’s next to a train or bus.

mr astor

Glad to see a long standing community organization making some money off of the current real estate boom.


The problem is that the “boom” won’t last; the bubble always bursts. IMO, there is already overbuilding of residential units in LIC/Astoria and the market will be taking a down turn soon enough. Just look at all the huge empty buildings around QBP. Non-profits need to really look at their finances well before jumping in. If things don’t go well, these kinds of expensive projects can completely kill them too. Regardless, if they build it, it should be more than 30% “affordable” units as well.


Those buildings are empty .they aren’t completed yet .Dont make comments without knowledge

Fr Juan A Quevedo

It was founded by Ann Buehler, a member of the church of the Redeemer, up the street, in a parking lot


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