The Bloomberg administration on Thursday announced an agreement with a group of developers that includes the owners of the New York Mets to clean up and develop a blighted neighborhood next to Citi Field.
The agreement covers a 20-acre portion of Willets Point in Queens. It calls for the developers, Related Companies and Sterling Equities, to construct a mix of retail, hotel and commercial space in a gritty area made up of auto repair shops and junkyards. Affordable housing units would be constructed.
The $3 billion project will create 12,000 union construction jobs and 7,100 permanent jobs and generate $4.2 billion in economic activity over the next three decades, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said.
The mayor announced the deal at a breakfast hosted by the Queens Chamber of Commerce at which he was joined by the owners of the Mets, and founders of Sterling Equities, Fred Wilpon and Saul Katz.
"Today the Valley of ashes is well on its way to becoming the site of historic private investment, major job creation and unprecedented environmental remediation," Bloomberg said.
Bloomberg said the city has set aside about 95 percent of the land needed to move the project forward.
The redevelopment of the area, which lacks infrastructure as basic as sewers, has long been a goal of Bloomberg's. In 2007, he announced a 10-year initiative that would bring homes and commercial space to the area.
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