Manhattan-based Slate Property Group is planning to build an 11-story, 170-unit rental building in place of the current Key Food supermarket at 69-65 Yellowstone Boulevard.
Documents show that Slate’s application for a demolition permit of the one-story building was approved in late June. Though the developer hasn’t filed building plans yet, they plan to do so within the next couple of months.
Construction for the building will begin next summer and is scheduled to be complete by 2020.
Of the new 230,000-square-foot building, 40,000 square feet will be dedicated to retail space on the ground floor and lower level.
Councilwoman Karen Koslowitz wants a grocery store to open in the space because of the local seniors who rely on the accessibility of the current supermarket. Thousands of residents live in the nearby buildings of Parker Towers and Gerard Towers.
The next closest grocery stores are Vitelio's Marketplace at 71-76 Yellowstone Boulevard, C-Town at 102-21 Queens Boulevard, and Key Food at 108-27 Queens Boulevard.
Residents are also worried about further congestion and overcrowding at area schools.
"Where are these kids going to school? Where will these people park? What trains are they taking?” asked one resident. “The city isn't keeping up with the development in this area and people endure the lag in services.”
On the other side, community members saw the positives in replacing the Key Food with new retail options.
Jared Nissim was excited about the possibility of the new building using the retail space for grocery stores like Whole Foods, as well as new restaurants.
“That block is kind of a dead zone now, this will give it life,” Nissim said. “Even now, the back half of the space is vacant. I won't feel sorry for Key Food.”