Swedish firm wins Rockaway design competition
by Andrew Shilling
Oct 30, 2013 | 533 views | 0 0 comments | 4 4 recommendations | email to a friend | print
HPD Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas.
HPD Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas.
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Pictured from left to right are Ron Moelis, Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas, Steve Bluestone, Delores Orr, Councilman Donovan Richards, and Shola Olatoye at the FAR ROC awards ceremony in Far Rockaway.
Pictured from left to right are Ron Moelis, Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas, Steve Bluestone, Delores Orr, Councilman Donovan Richards, and Shola Olatoye at the FAR ROC awards ceremony in Far Rockaway.
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It took 10 hours of deliberation, but a winner was chosen in the “For a Resilient Rockaway” (FAR ROC) design competition for a plan to develop along the Sandy-battered coastline.

One year after the superstorm that devastated New York City and Far Rockaway, the city, along with a jury of architecture and design firms, announced their choice for a blueprint that could bring new storm resilient development to the community.

“We are very excited about winning the competition,” said Sander Schuur, architect with winning firm White Arkitekter. “We are looking forward to working with the community, the developer and New York City to realize a new home for the community to celebrate life.”

Schuur' team, based in Stockholm, Sweden, was chosen from a pool of 117 submissions from over 20 countries for their vision of what should be used as the blueprint when petitioning to the city for approval, the next step in the FAR ROC design process.

Their design was chosen for unique plans that include a movie theater, learning center and a wide range of mixed-use and mixed-income development with at least 20 percent of the units set aside for affordable housing.

Schuur and the team from White Arkitekter was presented with a $30,000 check last week at a ceremony held at Beach 35th Street and Spray View Avenue in Far Rockaway.

“We believe we can strengthen and enrich the beautiful community and provide the opportunity for the community to realize their dreams,” Schuur said.

Councilman Donovan Richards said he will work with the city to make sure their plan and the work from FAR ROC pays off with much-needed development.

“This community is in desperate need of jobs, affordable housing and recreation and the design that went up today will accomplish just that,” Richards said. “This oasis we stand in today, has the opportunity to revitalize the waterfront community that has the potential to not only be the local economy jewel, but a premier New York City attraction.”

The project is called Arverne East and will be constructed on an 80-acre undeveloped stretch of oceanfront property in the Rockaways.

“Instead of backing away from the shoreline, we took the lessons learned from Sandy as an opportunity to assess our vulnerabilities and move ahead with smarter, more resilient waterfront development,” said Department of Housing and Preservation Development Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas said. “At Arverne East, we want to create a new neighborhood that is storm resilient, sustainable and which addresses the community’s affordable housing needs.”

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