The 10,000-square-foot lot is located next to St. Sarkis Armenian Apostolic Church at 39th Avenue and 234th Street. The Doug-Bay Manor Civic Association has been fighting for a park for over a decade, said member Tom Pinto.
Thirty years ago, the city condemned the property for the construction of a road that was never built.
The church proposed building a nursery school and a parking lot, but is was opposed by residents and eventually dropped.
Avella first proposed a park to former Parks commissioner Adrian Benepe, who
was supportive. But when Benepe left in 2012, Avella said “the transformation of the lot has been a battle ever since.”
Currently, there are no parks in Douglaston Manor.
“We are still trying to get the city to do the same things,” Avella said. “The Douglaston community deserves a city park just like any other part of New York City.”
Ann Jawin thinks a new park could host community events that are currently hosted at the nearby LIRR station.
“This could bring the community together and be an ideal area for light recreational activities,” she said. “New residents moving in could get to know each other, and the park would provide a sitting area for seniors and a place for children to play without worrying about cars.”