The civic associations in Fresh Meadows have been concerned about the use of three hotels, which are being built in the neighborhood. Noting what is going on in other neighborhoods of Queens, the Fresh Meadows residents have been fearful that the hotels might be turned into homeless shelters. At a meeting arranged by state Sen. Tony Avella, however, the owners of the two Marriott Hotels being built along the north side of the Long Island Expressway at 183rd Street emphatically stated that their hotels are being built as regular hotels.
Avella convened the meeting of representatives from the West Cunningham Park Civic Association, Civic Association of Utopia Estates, Fresh Meadows Homeowners Civic Association, Fresh Meadows Tenants Association, and the East West United Realty in his office. The owners of the two Marriott Hotels explained that they will not rent out to the homeless because they have learned that hotels which take in homeless residents have had vandalism with rooms destroyed. They then can’t get regular hotel guests to rent rooms and when they take in more homeless, they have more vandalism.
One of the hotels will be a Courtyard by Marriott and the other will be a Fairfield Inn. The owners have carefully thought out their plans. They plan to obtain customers from family members who have students in local colleges, family members of people in local hospitals, people passing through and from tour groups who will find it cheaper to rent out rooms in Queens rather than in hotels in New Jersey. It will be a quick ride from Fresh Meadows to Manhattan along the Long Island Expressway. They will also be close to sporting events in Flushing Meadows Corona Park.
Yes, they are all built as "regular hotels" at first. Then when they aren't successful, they are converted into shelters. If a giant name brand hotel in Maspeth, which is a hop, skip and a jump away from both Manhattan and Flushing Meadows can't attract the budget crowd, then how will one in Fresh Meadows do so?