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Flushing: Queens Neighborhood Profile


Flushing defines north-central Queens. The historic neighborhood core is the largest urban center in the borough, and it's the wealthiest and the largest Chinatown in New York City. Since the economic blight of the 1970s, Flushing has changed dramatically. Increasingly prosperous Chinese and Korean communities have grown to be the dominant groups. The downtown, a transportation hub, is now the busiest shopping district in Queens, with big money pinned to planned real estate developments.
Flushing Boundaries:
The Post Office says Flushing is all of central Queens from Maspeth to Whitestone. But the neighborhood of Flushing is really between Flushing Meadows Park and Utopia Parkway (Auburndale). To the north the Whitestone Expressway and Bayside Avenue separate it from College Point and Whitestone. The LIE is the southern border (Kew Gardens Hills). East of Main Street are the more suburban enclaves of Murray Hill and Flushing-Broadway (north of Northern Blvd).
Flushing Transportation:
Flushing is a 30-minute plus commute on the #7 subway to midtown Manhattan from the Main Street terminus. The LIRR also runs from Main Street to midtown—17 minutes.

Buses 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 20A, 20B, 25, 27, 34, 44, 48, 65, 66, and QB1 serve Flushing. The QM2 runs express to midtown.

The Whitestone Expressway connects Flushing north to the Bronx, south to the Van Wyck to JFK, and to the Grand Central and LaGuardia. Northern Boulevard and Main Street are the big commercial streets.

Flushing Real Estate and Apartments:
Flushing real estate prices have climbed high since the late 1990s. Multiple-family homes, often attached, and apartment buildings dominate. North of Northern and near Kissena Park there are beautiful single-family homes and higher prices (even $1 million+). At the south of downtown are several apartment towers.
  • July 2005
  • Apartments: studio, $800+; 1-br, $950-$1400; 2-br, $1100-$2000; 3-br, $1500+
  • Co-ops, $120k - $350k
  • Condos, $150k - $500k
  • 1-Family Houses, $500k+
  • 2-Family Houses, $600k+
Flushing Restaurants, Bakeries, and Markets:
Flushing is a mecca of Asian dining, especially Chinese and Korean, and it's not as well-known as it should be for Indian food. Spiced and priced for local residents, Flushing restaurants are a foodie's delight. Make sure to try the bubble tea and Chinese bakeries.

Gum Fong (136-28 39th Ave) serves dim sum by day and Cantonese dishes in the evening. Next to a Hindu temple, Dosa Hutt (45-63 Bowne St) is the best place in Queens for the quintessential south Indian snack/meal of dosas.

Flushing History:
Dutch colonists in the 1620s bought land from the Matinecocks. The colonists signed the Flushing Remonstrance in 1657, petitioning for, and later, securing religious freedom, which foresaw the freedom of religion in the U.S. Constitution. The tongue-tied English took control in 1664, and renamed Vlissingen, the original Dutch name, to Flushing.

A town in the original Queens County, Flushing grew rapidly after joining New York City in 1898. By the 1950s it was Queens' largest commercial district.

Flushing Main Streets and Shopping:
Main Street puts most Main Streets to shame with its range of shops from Benetton to Chinese herbalists, from Starbucks to dumpling stands. The heart of downtown--Main south from Northern to Kissena--is a barrage of restaurants, signs, traffic, and people. Don't miss the bargains or noodles at the Flushing Mall (39th Ave at Prince St).

Northern Boulevard also bustles, but with less foot traffic. It's an extended Koreatown strip that stretches east through Bayside and into Nassau County.

Green Spaces and Landmarks:
Lovely Kissena Park (Oak and Rose Aves) has a lake; playgrounds; basketball, bocce, and tennis courts; wide paths for strolling; golf course; and even a Velodrome. Flushing Meadows-Corona Park is a big hop over College Point Boulevard. Queens Botanical Garden is a small oasis south of downtown. Small Bowne Park (29th Ave and 155th St) is cool with a pond.

Flushing Town Hall isn't a town hall, but a great spot for local art and music. Historic Bowne House (37-01 Bowne St) is closed for repair.

Crime and Safety in Flushing:
Flushing is generally a safe neighborhood. Prostitution is a problem in the downtown. The industrial zone on both sides of Flushing River, especially Willets Point, are not places for walking alone or at night.

The 109th Precinct (including College Point) reported the following crimes for the year-to-date (6/12/05): 1 murder (3 in 2004), 11 rapes (6 in 2004), 136 robberies (135 in 2004), 80 felonious assaults (115 in 2004), and 210 burglaries (234 in 2004).

Neighborhood Basics:
  • See Flushing For Yourself: Photos of Flushing, Queens
  • Flushing Problems: Traffic, congestion, and overdevelopment are community concerns. Pollution cleanup and development of the Flushing River and Willets Point Iron Triangle are continually advanced.
  • Famous Residents: Actress Fran Drescher and singer Paul Simon grew up in Flushing.
  • Queens College: South of the LIE from the downtown, Queens College is one of the more highly regarded CUNY institutions (63-50 Kissena Blvd, 718-997-5000).
  • Library: Flushing Branch, 41-17 Main St, 718-661-1200
  • Parking: Avoid Main Street. Side streets are tough. Parking lots in the downtown are your best options. The sprawling Flushing #1 Municipal Parking Field is the best bet (37th Ave at Union St).
  • Post Office: 41-65 Main St, 11355
  • Hospital:
  • Movies: National Amusements College Point Multiplex Cinemas, 28-55 Ulmer St, Whitestone, NY 11357, 718-886-4900
  • Police Station: 109th Precinct, 37-05 Union St, 11354, 718-321-2250
  • Community Board 7: 133-32 41st Rd, Suite 3B, 11355, 718-359-2800
  • Local History: Queens Historical Society, Kingsland Homestead, Weeping Beech Park, 143-35 37th Ave, 11354, 718-939-0647 x17
  • Business Organizations:
    • Flushing Business Improvement District (BID), 39-01 Main St, Suite 507, 718-888-1805
    • Flushing Chamber of Commerce and Business Association, c/o National Bank of NY, 138th St & 38th Ave, 718-358-4400
    • Flushing Chinese Business Association, 40-42 Main St, 3rd fl, 718-353-2320
    • Korean American Association of Flushing, c/o Hanmi Realty, 37-17 Union St, 3rd fl, 718-961-8801
  • Banking: Find local and national banks on Main and Roosevelt. Queens County Savings Bank (156-18 Northern Blvd) started in Flushing and is part of New York Community Bank.
  • Health Club: The Flushing Y has a gym and classes but its pool gets packed (13846 Northern Blvd, 718-961-6880).
  • Zip Code: 11354, 11355, and parts of 11358, 11365, and 11367
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