Friday, July 10, 2015

Plan to Build 3 Hotels, Apt Building & Supermarket in Jamaica

A Flushing developer is planning to build three Marriott-brand hotels in downtown Jamaica, near the LIRR and AirTrain station to JFK Airport. Chris Xiu recently purchased the site of the former Gertz department store on Archer Ave for $22 million in cash. The property, on the corner of Guy Brewer Boulevard at 163-05 to 163-25 Archer Avenue, is the largest development site in Jamaica.

Jamaica Tower LLC plans to construct two hotels — a Courtyard by Marriott and a Fairfield Inn and Suites — on Archer Avenue, near 149th Street.  Both hotels would be located in one building and will be built by Construction & Development Group of Flushing.

The new 16-story building will contain more than 330 hotel rooms, with 224 rooms planned for Courtyard, while Fairfield Inn and Suites would have 114 rooms.

Plans for the Archer Avenue hotels were approved by the Department of Buildings in August.

Mr. Xiu, who has built several hotels in Flushing, near LaGuardia Airport, and in Chinatown, also plans to build an apartment building and a supermarket on Archer Avenue, near Guy Brewer Boulevard.

The development site, which consists of two adjacent lots with nearly 90,000 square feet, includes an unused seven-story parking garage and several shops, and can accommodate of 720,000 square feet of new construction.

The developer intends to demolish the garage at 163-25 Archer Avenue, and replace it with market-rate housing with several hundred apartments.

He is also planning to replace the existing stores located at 163-03 thru 163-17 Archer Avenue with a large supermarket.

Jamaica Tower is also planning to build six-story hotel — a Springhill Suites by Marriott — at different development site located on Queens Boulevard, between Jamaica and Hillside avenues. That hotel will feature 160 rooms.

A representative from Marriott has confirmed that all three hotels are in development, and expects the hotels to be open for business within three years.

Downtown Jamaica, which has been dynamically changing in recent years, has become a major transportation hub since JFK’s AirTrain station opened in 2003.

And since the neighborhood is only minutes from the airport, at least a dozen new hotel and real estate developments have been planned for the area.

Councilman Peter Koo believes the projects will bring hundreds of new jobs to the neighborhood.

“When you build hotels, you bring prosperity to the community,” Koo said, adding that hotels attract tourists, who spend money in the neighborhood when they “shop for souvenirs, eat at local restaurants and call a taxi.”

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