Western Queens is at the forefront of an economic phenomenon – the rise of “tech,” one of the fastest growing sectors in NYC. Its proximity to Manhattan, its relationship to the Cornell NYC Tech campus on Roosevelt Island, and its physical and human assets make for an ideal tech hub. The vision of this study is to assess and facilitate western Queens’ future as a center for tech, while being mindful that it must not come at the cost of social equity – as has been the case in many other tech hubs.
The special LIC Mixed-Use District, abutted by three proposed sub-districts.
The Studio’s client, Coalition for Queens (C4Q) – Long Island City non-profit focused on advocacy for the tech community and tech education for the general public has recognized this opportunity. The organization is currently working to form a task force composed of city officials, tech experts, and community members to explore the implementation of a tech-zone master plan. The recommendations in this report will serve as a platform for further research and public engagement by the task force.
In order to assist western Queens in reaching the economic and social potential C4Q has recognized, the Studio sought to develop a broad understanding of the issues at play. The Studio broadly divided our analysis into two major sections: Physical Infrastructure and Human Infrastructure. When an area is examined, it is evaluated on the basis of the physical space, environment, and the people who use it – to emphasize the need for a holistic approach. These two sections include Land use and zoning, real estate, broadband Internet, transportation network, the area’s political landscape, major demographic trends, economic development, and placemaking strategies.
Coalition for Queens (C4Q) is a Long Island City based non-profit focused on advocacy for the tech community and tech education for the general public. They represent tech companies by advocating for the technology industry in the Borough of Queens. Hoping to capitalize on the rapidly expanding tech scene in New York City, C4Q uses education, events, and advocacy to create an appealing and supportive environment in which technology companies can thrive.