Billions In Public, Private Investment Fueling A Transformation In Jamaica

Last week was a groundbreaking moment for Jamaica, Queens, both literally and figuratively. Local officials and developer BRP Cos. broke ground on the $407M affordable mixed-use project The Crossing at Jamaica Station. The project is another symbol that the neighborhood known mostly for being close to the airport is poised to be a development hotbed for years to come.

Rendering of BRP Companies' The Crossing at Jamaica Station mixed-use project in Queens

“This will be a catalyst for future development in Jamaica,” BRP director of development Andy Cohen said. “We feel there is demand for multifamily, amenity-rich development and city and state support for new development.”

When completed in 2020, the two-building project will have 669 apartments, 100% of which will be affordable, with occupants in a wide range of income levels. Cohen said the affordable housing lottery, likely to draw tens of thousands

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Maine developers seek ways to calm the neighbors about new projects

As head of a company that builds affordable housing, Dana Totman knows what it’s like to face neighborhood opposition to a proposed development.

Totman, president and CEO of Portland-based Avesta Housing, said a 2014 effort to build a senior housing project in Portland even resulted in threats to his family.

“One neighbor objected – viciously, vigorously,” Totman said. “He pointed out that he knew where my wife and I lived.”

Developers in Portland say that NIMBYism, the tendency of nearby residents to categorically reject any proposed development they deem unappealing, is a serious problem, especially in Portland.

However, some Portland residents who have led efforts against development in the past said the only thing they object to is city officials approving projects that don’t meet established planning and zoning standards.

A group of developers met this month in South Portland to discuss strategies for overcoming neighborhood opposition, which they said can stifle economic growth, drive

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