Nonprofit industrial developer GMDC will open the Ozone Park Industrial Center in Queens.
The $42 million development is the largest investment project in the community in decades.
Local woodworkers, fine artisans, custom fabricators and others are among the small business owners and workers will take up residence at the new Industrial Center.
With its 85,000 s/f of space across three buildings occupying an entire city block, the newest building from GMDC is poised to reinvigorate the local economy.
GMDC chief executive officer Brian T. Coleman said that with an average salary of $51,000, “good, solid manufacturing jobs like these are an entry point to middle class.”
Coleman added, “Right now, it’s difficult to earn a middle-class wage in New York. You’ve got a population that drifts towards either end of the spectrum – the very rich or the struggling.
“The companies that are setting up shop at Ozone Park are giving their workers a chance at a productive, more lucrative life.”
The GMDC Ozone Park Industrial Center was the first project to receive grant funding through the City’s Industrial Developer Fund (IDF), created by Mayor de Blasio and former speaker Melissa Mark-Vivireto in 2015 as part of the Industrial Action Plan.
Through the IDF, GMDC received a $10 million grant for the redevelopment of the property, as well as a $3.7 million loan through the Industrial Developer Loan Fund.
Additionally, $2.3 million in City property tax benefits were provided through the NYC Industrial Development Agency.
The development is also supported by Chase, New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC), Enterprise Community Partners, Empire State Development, National Grid, Partnership Fund for New York City, and Sterling National Bank.
En Jung Kim, executive director, Community Development Banking, Chase, commented, “We’re proud to work with GMDC and support the transformation of this former bicycle factory in Ozone Park through our Tax Credit program.”
“As many local small businesses struggle with increasing rent and rezoning, affordable workspaces are becoming harder and harder to find,” added Judi Kende, vice president and New York market leader, Enterprise. “We are proud to partner with GMDC, Chase, NYCEDC, and Empire State Development to make this important project come to life.”
“Sterling Bank is proud to have GMDC as a customer and community partner,” added Karen Jenson, Associate Managing Director, Sterling National Bank.
Beyer Blinder Belle Architects & Planners worked with Greenpoint Manufacturing and Design Center on the Ozone Park Industrial Center.
Michael Wetsone, principal BBB, said, “In renovating a 113-year-old historic industrial building, this project is a perfect confluence of historic preservation, sustainable design, urban economic development, and positive social benefit; all of which are core to our firm’s 51-year history and mission.”
Since its inception in 1992, GMDC has rehabilitated eight manufacturing buildings in Brooklyn for occupancy by small manufacturing enterprises, artisans and artists. GMDC currently owns and manages six of these properties.