Today’s news:

Flushing construction messed up parking lot

Patrons of Flushing Mall's food court will have to park a little farther away after the owner tore down the parking lot across the street.
TimesLedger Newspapers

After a Flushing developer tore up a downtown parking lot to make way for a planned mixed-use building, the project caused another one of its properties to be in violation of its certificate of occupancy.

TDC Development, headquartered on a floor in one of its own buildings called Queens Crossing, at 39th Avenue and Main Street, broke ground earlier this spring on One Fulton Square, a 12-story residential, office and retail building at the corner of Prince Street and 39th Avenue.

Construction crews demolished a parking lot that used to exist on the site and began digging the foundation, but the lot happened to be a required concession for the nearby Flushing Mall, according to documents from the city Department of Buildings.

The Flushing Mall’s certificate of occupancy, a document issued by Buildings that stipulates appropriate uses for a building, required TDC to provide a total of 214 off-street parking spots.

The document stipulated that 138 of those spots were to be provided at the parking lot on the corner of Prince Street and 39th Avenue, but once construction began the spots were eliminated.

Michael Meyer, president of TDC Development, said that extra parking would be provided at another lot his company owns on College Point Boulevard at 37th Avenue to make up for the lost parking at Prince Street and 39th Avenue.

“We are using the College Point Boulevard site, which is right across the street,” he said.

A parking attendant at the mall confirmed that extra parking was available at the location described by Meyer.

But TDC has not yet amended its certificate of occupancy with Buildings, according to a Buildings spokeswoman, and the developer could face fines from the Environmental Control Board, a city agency that dishes out violations for building and environmental-related offences.

Meyer said the issue is also a result of bad timing and the need for off-street parking in the bustling downtown area.

Flushing Mall was supposed to be torn down and turned into a parking lot for yet another of TDC’s projects, an $850 million mixed-use project called Flushing Commons that is proposed to take the place of Municipal Lot 1 between 37th and 39th avenues between 138th and Union streets.

When Flushing Commons breaks ground, eliminating hundreds of parking spaces, TDC will raze the mall to make up for the lost parking.

But TDC has not broken ground on Flushing Commons, and Meyer said the project has been delayed due to lack of funding.

Because of that delay, Flushing Mall is still standing, along with its certificate of occupancy.

Reach reporter Joe Anuta by e-mail at januta@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4566.

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