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Queens Chronicle

Builder: no worries at Sky View

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Posted: Thursday, February 26, 2009 12:00 am

Sky View Parc continues to rise above Flushing, and the area’s business community couldn’t be happier.

“We’re very enthusiastic about that project,” Flushing Chamber of Commerce co-President Myra Baird Herce said Tuesday. “We have been for a long time. Now that it’s coming to fruition, we’re delighted, and we know that it will be one of the major anchors on the west side of Main Street.”

The future of the housing and retail complex came into question in the press last month, when Crain’s New York Business reported that a major financier, Arbor Realty Trust, was holding money back due to the weak economy. The builder, Muss Development, reportedly put up $4 million of its own money to keep the project going — and the nearly 400 people working on it employed.

Herce confirmed there never was a work stoppage.

Muss declined to provide the Queens Chronicle with details at the time but said it was working to “resolve issues” with its partners and lenders. Arbor said it “remains committed” to the project.

This week, Muss put out a statement designed to make clear that work never stopped, the residential towers are going up as planned and sales of the condominiums within them continue. Six units, worth $5 million collectively, have been sold since December, the firm said.

“Sky View Parc is a dynamic development for Flushing, Queens and New York City,” Muss Vice President Jason Muss said in the statement. “It has been successful by every measure.Construction on the project continues and currently is on track for the first residential building and stores to open in the fall.”

The first phase of the complex, located on College Point Boulevard between Roosevelt Avenue and 40th Road, will feature 448 condos with all the amenities, parking for 2,500 cars and 800,000 square feet of retail space when complete. A second phase will add about 650 more residences at the western end of the site.

Herce said the development will help “connect” Flushing to Corona and the rest of Queens. “I love it,” she said. “I’m so glad to see it happen.”

The chamber president added that one key reason Flushing has embraced the project is who’s behind it: Muss, a family-owned concern that has been in business for 103 years.

“They’re solid, respectable people, they have high integrity and high ethics,” she said, “and for many in the business community, that is very important.”

Company President Joshua Muss told Herce of his plans for the 14-acre site, which had been industrial, back in the early 1980s, when the firm bought it from Con Edison. Muss held onto the property until the city rezoned it for residences and shops.

The firm said it expects to top out the frame of the second residential tower in the next couple of weeks.

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