CB 7 on Willets Pt. biz moves to Corporate Park: Feinstein stands alone

Leaders from Community Board 7 and College Point held their fifth and final meeting with the Economic Development Corporation to discuss the relocation of five Willets Point businesses to the College Point Corporate Park Monday night, singling out Feinstein Ironworks as the problem child of the group.

The EDC has been working with the College Point Corporate Park Task Force to relocate Sambucci Bros. Auto Salvage, Flushing Towing, T. Mina Building Supply Co., Met Metals and Feinstein Ironworks to the Corporate Park.  While task force members seemed content (in some cases even happy) with the plans for four of the businesses, the group remains unilaterally opposed to the current plans for Feinstein Ironworks.

Task force members complained that Feinstein has shown no willingness to improve his business at Willets point and has been uncooperative with the community every step of the way.

“That guy did nothing to help anyone other than himself,” said CB 7 Chairman Gene Kelty.

Kelty and Task Force Chairman Chuck Apelian have had an icy relationship with Feinstein’s owner, Dan Feinstein, and EDC Vice President cautioned against bringing personal feelings into the negotiations.

“I wouldn’t want personalities to get in the way of planning a site,” McKnight said.

“If we get personalities involved it’ll escalate,” Apelian shot back. “This goes beyond that. We’re saying, ‘you know what? If this is the honeymoon we don’t want to be married.'”

Kelty and Apelian said they would like a portion of Feinstein’s proposed 120,000-square-foot site to be given to Sambucci Bros. and T. Mina Building Supply, who under the city plan would operate on a much smaller piece of property.

McKnight indicated such a change would not be likely to occur.

“Then I gotta tell ya Tom, we’re going to have a problem with the vote,” Kelty said.

The group also reiterated that if the Flushing Aiport site is not set aside for soft recreation uses,  CB 7 is not likely to approve the plan.

The task force left without issuing a recommendation to the Community Board, which had been scheduled to vote on the plan April 13.

While the Community Board only has an advisory role in the decision its support could be important because the home-rule City Councilman, Tony Avella (D-Bayside), has already expressed disapproval with the moves.  The Community Board has until the end of April to issue a recommendation.

More on this in the coming days.

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