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Demolition of 90-Year-Old House Halted Due to Unsafe Conditions

Demolition work at 42-17 48th Avenue

Sept. 4, 2019 By Shane O’Brien

The owner of a 90-year-old house that is currently undergoing demolition on 48th Avenue has been issued with a Stop Work Order, with the Department of Buildings citing unsafe construction conditions.

The DOB conducted a routine inspection of the site at 42-17 48th Ave. last week and ordered that work be stopped immediately due to multiple violations. The DOB had issued a demolition permit in January allowing the owner to bulldoze the home.

The two-story brick home on the border of Sunnyside and Woodside was built in 1929 and is connected to an entirely separate house immediately adjacent to it. The adjacent home, located at 42-15 48th Ave., has a different owner and is not being developed.

Farzan Adhami, an Astoria-based developer, plans to build a four-story, 10-unit building on the 42-17 48th Ave. site that he bought in August 2018 for $1.17 million. He told the Sunnyside Post today that he has no plans to acquire and develop the adjacent house.

Demolition work ceased on Adhami’s property on Thursday, Aug. 29.

The DOB inspection revealed that the construction site had no overhead protection, guardrails or a sidewalk shed to protect pedestrians from falling debris.

Furthermore, the inspection found that debris was excessive at the site and blocked emergency exits for workers.

The contractors are prohibited from working at the site while the Stop Work Order is in effect. Workers are permitted to install the required overhead protection and sidewalk sheds at this time.

Adhami said that he is currently working with the DOB to have the order lifted, but couldn’t say when that might happen.

The two separate but adjacent properties, roughly outlined. (Google Maps/QueensPost)

Adhami said today that he aims to have the new building completed within two years.

He filed plans for a 6,700 square foot apartment building on the site back in February. The four-story building would consist of two or three units on each floor and a recreational space on the building’s rooftop.

The apartments would be a mix of studios and two-bedroom apartments.

The new building would be about 30 feet lower in height than the six-story apartment complex on the same block toward 42nd Street.

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32 Comments

Optics

Why don’t all of us, like the many Sunnysiders who post about “needing” their cars, buy vehicles? It’s our God-given right, after all. And think of how much less crowded the trains would be. Who’s with me?

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Sean

The house on the other side with be structurally unsound soon enough. You need the adjoining wall to have pressure against the house. There will either be cracks or water leaks in the building now.

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Anonymous

With the building being demolished opened up like that to the elements the attached building is going to start feeling the effects very shortly.

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Confused in Woodside

I live in Woodside and if the zoning states up to six stories can be built then why on my block they tearing down 2 story house and built a 7 story which will look like eye sore ??? The CB 2 & DOB approve this
Can someone explain zoning ???

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gagf

Certain blocks allow up to 80 feet if a certain number of units are below market rate.

Also, 7 story buildings are fairly common in Queens and the area in general, they aren’t an “eye sore”. People who don’t own housing are extremely rent burdened right now, so we need a lot more housing. NYC has some of the slowest housing growth in the country, even though the population of the city exploded over the past ten years.

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Queens Streets for LOL

But I thought the community knew better than the agencies when it comes to matters of safety?

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LIC Direct

Feel bad for the owners of the adjacent home. All this won’t matter once the new city community jail goes up in the neighborhood with the blessings of your little man Photo-Op Jimmy Van Bramer.
https://nypost.com › 2019/07/31 › queens-councilman-wants-to-trade-park…

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SuperWittySmitty

The building is old and run down. It looked interesting but it was in bad shape. Low-occupancy homes with lawns are expensive and impracticable in a densely populated area like Sunnyside.

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Joe at the Berkeley

Super W-Sunnyside was designed to be low density the further you got from Queens Blvd. it was also laid out and planned with natural light and greenery in mind so lawns were apart of this “suburban” garden vision. City mismanagement and corruption such as abuse of “variances”has undermined the original garden community theme of this early planned community.

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gagf

Only the gardens area is historically protected.

Population grows naturally over time so it makes sense that lowrise buildings would be replaced by highrise buildings.

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migwar

I think there should be some law or regulation prohibiting the demolition of a semi-detached building (or, for that matter, one or more rowhouses in a larger row) unless the entire “double” building – or the entire row of buildings – is being demolished in a coordinated project. It is bad enough when work in a semi-detached building results, inadvertently, in a hole into the neighbor’s home through a party wall. (This happened to my neighbor.) To have the entire “semi-detached” – which essentially means ATTACHED – structure demolished means the remaining half of the building is left weakened, with a “party wall” instead of an outside wall of the usual thickness to support the structure. Bad idea, and should be prohibited.

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Post

The owner is like “F-k man. In Bangladesh we just bring a couple of bulldozer and be done in one day. No helmets required”

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Anonymous

I can’t believe and engineer or architect signed off on this demo and construction plan. It’s just nuts.

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AOC for president of USA 2024

I think owner waited for Amazon. Thanks to AOC that house price didn’t go rocket high.

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Anonymous

how did the community board 2 and DOB allow to even consider building a 4 story building without letting the public aware. Parking as it is now, is unbearable, now you want to add an additional 12 apartments.

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gagf

Pay for parking if it is so hard to find.

Statistically only 20% of the community owns a car, and of those most are concentrated in the single family areas. Most younger people, the people who would be moving into these apartments:
1. Can’t afford a car
2. Wouldn’t want one, as it’s unnecessary unless you need it for work.

Nothing makes me angrier than older residents blocking new housing whenever they can. My generation, the younger generation, is being completed destroyed when it comes to the cost of living. I find that people who own property are completely unaware how much we’re paying each month in rent. A typical one bedroom in the community is around $1,700 per month, with two bedroom units being around $2,500.

We need more housing, a lot more housing, or people will never be able to live in the neighborhoods they grew up in. The overly restrictive zoning preventing new market rate construction combined with the city’s complete lack of interest in building new social or public housing has led to a housing affordability crisis that will take a generation to build our way out of.

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Sunnysideposthatesme

oh please shut the hell up. People like you are the worst, you do absolutely NOTHING to fix a problem, instead toss in some stupid random MADE UP fact . you probably don’t even live in the neighborhood or have to worry about parking.

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Native New Yorker

Property rights dictate that the property owner can do what they want with the property up to the limits of zoning. Sunnyside/Woodside is zoned for residential buildings up to six stories.

The zoning has been up to six stories since the 7 train was built in the early 20th Century.

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Anonymous

Your knowledge of zoning laws is amazing. You are the reason certain people should not be allowed to vote. Go online and look at a zoning map. Sunnyside/ Woodside do not have uniform zoning block by block. Wow just wow.

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SuperWittySmitty

I live near this block; parking is not “unbearable.” The fact is that there is plenty of public transportation nearby that you don’t even need a car. I’m here over 20 years and owning a car is completely unnecessary.

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ann

That’s fine for you. But consider residents who travel with small children, work equipment, transport elderly relatives, or are themselves physically limited or even handicapped. Getting around for them often requires a car.

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Gina

Since when the community has a say in what the politicians decide…… make a rally, scream as much as you want, it will make no difference, politicians don’t have to live here and deal with all the inconvenience.. it’s not right…

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gagf

The simple fact is that if you’re a landowner it’s in your best interest to block as much development as possible as it might result in a greater ROI for your property.

For renters, young people, and poor people this mindset is horrible as it results in insanely high rents that frequently consume 50% of income.

I know a lot of posters here are cranky older people who own property in the community, but please try to have some empathy for other residents that are being hurt by the current shortage of housing.

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