37-10 Crescent Street, a seven-story, 66,599-square-foot, mixed-use complex known as The Lanes, appears close to completion. Located in northern Long Island City, it will feature 55 residential units atop a manufacturing space on the ground floor. Ranger Properties is the developer, Fogarty Finger is the architect and Abacus Building Innovations Inc. is the general contractor.
The new complex gets its name from the Crescent Lanes bowling alley, which served the community between 1958 and the late 1960s. The single-story warehouse was then used for a variety of commercial and light industrial uses, most recently a limousine service. The nearly-windowless eyesore bit the dust in 2015. Foundations were in progress by the end of that year, and the new roughly 80-foot-tall building topped out by July 2016.
The mid-block building sits upon an 18,275-square-foot, trapezoidal lot, stretching 159 feet long along Crescent Street. White bands run along street-facing floor plates, underscoring the building’s horizontality. Staggered cement board panels separate the floor-to-ceiling windows.
37-10 Crescent Street straddles two zoning districts. The southern portion, which sits within the M1-2/R5D district, is set back above the second floor. The northern part, located in the higher-density M1-2/R6A district, rises without setbacks to the roof terrace, were it meets the ornamented cornice of the Hephaistos Supplies Building under construction next door.
The cellar and ground floor span the entire lot. The Remedial Investigation Report, prepared by Athenica Environmental Services, Inc., shows a 51-car garage occupying most of the cellar, while permits from December 2014 indicate 48 spaces.
Permits allocate 11,647 square feet of ground floor for manufacturing. This typology, with a manufacturing podium capped with several stories of residences above, is growing increasingly common in Dutch Kills. Ongoing projects that feature a similar arrangement include 25-11 38th Avenue, 37-27 31st Street and 37-29 33rd Street.
The developer seeks to lease the facility to photography and film production tenants, as permitted by the city’s guidelines for manufacturing zones. Northern Long Island City and southern Astoria share a long history of film production. Silvercup and Kaufman Astoria Studios sit within a half-mile of the project. Developers of 31-12 38th Avenue, in progress a few blocks southeast, seek to attract similar clients for their ground-floor space.
According to permits, 55 units would span 42,170 square feet, averaging 767 square feet per apartment. The architect’s website and City Realty, however, place the unit count at 57. City Realty reveals that the units will consist of two- and three-bedroom arrangements, averaging 490 square feet and 735 square feet respectively. The compact size of these fully-furnished units is rather average for new Dutch Kills construction. Folding Murphy beds are among the roster of space-saving features. The minimalist interior design reflects the building’s sparse exterior.
Resident amenities include a fitness center and a bike room.
The second-floor setback sports a street-facing terrace. Another terrace sits atop the single-story podium in the rear, an increasingly typical feature for new local projects.
The building sits near the junction of several distinct neighborhoods. The expansive seventh-level roof deck opens west upon the low-slung industrial blocks of Ravenswood, which allow for sweeping Manhattan vistas. Ravenswood remains generally untouched by Long Island City’s ongoing development spree, yet 13- and 11-story hotels at 37-10 34th Street and 37-11 23rd Street, under construction one block west, herald incoming change.
Trinity Grace Church and the Dutch Kills Playground, the area’s largest green space, sit half a block north. The playground faces 36th Avenue, which acts as the border with Astoria.
The building’s diverse neighbors along Crescent Street consist of one- to seven-story buildings containing residences, retail, industry, and a storage facility. The street runs along the western boundary of Dutch Kills, a northeast Long Island City neighborhood notable for its mix of residential and manufacturing zoning. A 2008 rezoning kick-started a number of nearby projects, such as 25-10 38th Avenue, 37-21 32nd Street, 33-01 38th Avenue, 37-14 34th Street, 31-12 38th Avenue, 32-04 38th Avenue and others.
The Lanes is a contextual addition to the neighborhood. Its manufacturing component respects the neighborhood’s industrial legacy, the intended film industry tenant fits with the local motion picture industry, and the user mix will animate the block with round-the-clock street presence. Still, it would have been nice had the project revived the bowling alley in more than name only, re-introducing the amenity into a resurgent residential neighborhood.