BY LUIS GRONDA
Visions of the proposed QueensWay were brought to light last week.
The Emerging New York Architects committee announced the winners of its 2014 design ideas competition, which focused on gathering renderings of the proposed 3.5-mile bike path.
Out of 120 entries to the contest, the committee has selected the best five. That includes one by Hyuntek Yoon, a Long Island City-based architectural designer, who was the lone Queens representative out of the designs selected.
Park advocates have been campaigning to convert the vacant stretch of land in southern and central Queens into a bike path, similar to that of the High Line in Manhattan. A Long Island Rail Road train formerly ran on the tracks until the 1960s.
Part of the project’s central focus was to design a street entry into the elevated bike path.
James Yankopoulos, who was one of the competition coordinators, said their main goal was to find designs that show an entranceway in Ozone Park to the elevated path.
He said if a QueensWay was to be created at that site, residents need to be able to get in and out of the path without disturbing its neighbors and the surrounding area.
He added that more modest submissions were selected as the ones to be honored, compared to more complex designs that some sent in, because the committee were looking for renderings that were more realistic.
As for Yoon, he said he was honored to be the only local resident selected, but he does feel he could have been placed higher.
“It is great honor for me because I am only winner from New York. I think I understand neighborhoods much better than other entries, so it is little sorry not to receive the first prize. But still I am very happy to have this,” he said in an email.
According to Yoon, his project, titled “Upside-Down Bridge,” “opens up the visual and physical corridors between two urban fabrics, and at the same time, creates a smooth transition from the ground to the railway.”
A Kitchen Garden next to the design would also bring urban farming to his vision, he said.
The first-place winner was a project called “The Queensway Steps,” submitted by Carrie Wilbert from France.
Reach Luis Gronda at (718) 357-7400, Ext. 127, email@example.com, or @luisgronda.