Floral Park approves special permit application for new Covert Avenue restaurant

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Floral Park approves special permit application for new Covert Avenue restaurant
Mayor Kevin M. Fitzgerald. (Photo courtesy of the candidate)

The Floral Park Board of Trustees approved a special-use permit Tuesday for a new restaurant at 99 Covert Ave. despite opposition from community members.

The restaurant, American Bistro, will occupy the former home of  Sterling National Bank and is owned by Michael McGuire, who previously owned Trinity Restaurant in the village for 27 years.

This was the fourth meeting regarding a special permit at the location.

Covert Avenue is located in a residential neighborhood with two dead-end streets branching off of the avenue.

Multiple residents cited the proposed new restaurant as a “dangerous” situation, especially because of children and elderly residents living in the neighborhood, and complained that they have been asking for a traffic light in their neighborhood to no avail. 

Some residents complained that the new restaurant may cause additional traffic because of a proposed drive-thru window, will take up residential street parking and cause accidents.

One resident of the neighborhood, a Mr. Franzetti, said it is already difficult enough to turn onto the street where he lives off Covert Avenue.

“If there’s a drive-thru, and now you’ve got [more] cars coming out,” he said.“You might as well put a circus there.” 

Aside from the new restaurant permit, trustees encouraged Floral Park citizens to shop and dine locally in celebration of Valentine’s Day.

Trustee Frank Chiara shared that the Floral Park Public Library will be hosting a love song performance at 3 p.m. on February 11 to kick off the Valentine’s Day festivities.

Although love is in the air, tax season is also upon us. The Floral Park Public Library programming includes plenty of opportunities for residents to begin filing their tax returns.

Nassau County Receiver of Taxes Jeanine Driscoll will be at the library on Feb. 27 at 1 p.m. to answer any questions about filing taxes. An attorney will discuss how to make a will, trust and other legal documents at the library on Feb. 28 at 1 p.m.

The library will also be hosting AARP Tuesdays throughout the month on Feb. 13, Feb. 20 and Feb. 27 for senior citizens who would like assistance preparing their tax returns.

The CREW Committee, or Coalition for Education and Wellness, has a new table at the entrance of the library with mental health and substance abuse resources.

Trustees also discussed several new proposed businesses, a slew of local Valentine’s Day programming and a tentatively scheduled Floral Park Day at the UBS Arena in Elmont.

Trustee Michael Longobardi briefly discussed several new Floral Park business proposals, including a Haagen-Dazs, a new pizza place, two new pharmacies and a convenience store.

Trustee Lynn Pombonyo encouraged residents to join the Centennial Gardens in the 27th Annual Great Backyard Bird Count, taking place on Feb. 16 through Feb. 18. 

Mayor Kevin Fitzgerald said that a new Floral Park Day is tentatively scheduled to take place at a new park outside of the UBS Arena on March 2.

The next Floral Park Board of Trustees meeting will take place on Feb. 20 at 8 p.m.

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