New trustee, same village issues in New Hyde Park

New trustee, same village issues in New Hyde Park
The Village of New Hyde Park board at a previous meeting. (Photo by Rebecca Klar)

The New Hyde Park village board introduced the public to a new trustee at Tuesday night’s meeting – and he was introduced to some old village issues.

Rainer Burger, who grew up in Floral Park but has been living in New Hyde Park, where he raised his family, was appointed to the board to finish the term of the late Trustee Donald Barbieri, who died in February.

During the meeting, Mayor Lawrence Montreuil updated residents on the Long Island Rail Road Third Track project.

The MTA is building a 9.8-mile track on the LIRR Main Line that stretches from Floral Park to Hicksville.

As early as Thursday, residents on Covert Avenue, Wayne Avenue, 2nd Avenue and 3rd Avenue can expect workers to start “cutting up” the street to install new sanitary sewer lines and water lines, Montreuil said.

Residents will be temporarily disconnected from service and reconnected, which should be within an hour, Montreuil said.

Going forward, from January to June, Covert Avenue will be closed for more construction, Montreuil said.

For one and a half months workers will be drilling throughout the day and night on Covert Avenue, Montreuil said. The 24-hour days will allow the workers to, hopefully, finish the project in the allotted time, Montreuil said.

Several residents voiced concern, once again, about the project and noted that especially for the elderly in the area the construction will be difficult to live around.

One resident went so far as to ask Montreuil if she should sell her 90-year-old mother’s house before the construction begins.

Certain residents may have to be relocated, Montreuil said, adding that is one reason the village negotiated the community benefit fund to address issues that may arise, one being to aid residents affected by the project.

There is $20 million allocated to the communities across the project, and it is divided up based on the amount of work being done, Montreuil said.

There is another $10 million on top of that, he added.

The money could go toward putting certain residents up in hotels during the process, he said.

“It’s going to be very, very impactful, we knew it was going to be,” Montreuil said. “… It is going to be dreadful and we’ve said this for several years now. This is ground zero, it’s going to be terrible; there’s no way to sugarcoat this.”

Also during the meeting Ramin Baratian requested a special use approval to repair and sell used luxury cars at 1800 Jericho Turnpike.

The board reserved decision and said it will wait to hear the recommendation from the planning commission.

This was the third application for the use, and it has been an issue for eight years, Superintendent of the Building Department Tom Gannon said.

The applicant originally sought a request to sell cars on the lot in 2010, and did not act upon the village approval in the necessary six months.

The lot was intended to be a Suzuki dealership, but the company decided to stop selling cars in the United States, Baratian said.

He also owns Great Neck Suzuki on Northern Boulevard.

The lot is only approved for auto repairs, not sales, without the special use approval.

All outstanding legal matters and summons have been dealt with between the village and the applicant, according to both Gannon and the applicant’s attorney, Linda Agnew, with the Melville-based Harras Bloom & Archer firm.

Attorney Linda Agnew shows plans for a luxury, used car dealership on Jericho Turnpike.
(Photo by Rebecca Klar)

The current application seeks to create a 3,300-square-foot, one-story showroom on the lot.

The board was concerned with how many cars would be parked in the exterior of the lot.

Baratian said some cars will be displayed outside because not all can be in the showroom.

He added that in order to make a profit he needs to sell at least 25 to 35 cars a month, and to do that he needs at least 40 cars in inventory.

The indoor showroom would be able to fit approximately 20 cars, Baratian said.

Residents who live on South 18th Street and Hoffman Road said they oppose the use because they have seen cars without plates speeding out of the lot and into the residential roads.

Baratian said that all of his cars that are test driven have plates.

Residents also expressed concern that trucks delivering cars would block residential roads.

Baratian said all deliveries are directed to go to the Great Neck location and cars are then driven one by one to New Hyde Park.

Also during the meeting the board amended a local law that would allow it to entertain more applications on 2nd and 3rd streets.

The amended use would help spur development along the railroad tracks, Montreuil said.

It will also help the village with its plan to create a “vibrant community center,” Montreuil said.

In unrelated business, during the meeting several residents who live on Stewart Avenue, including Tom Magaldi and Melissa McCann, said they want speed bumps to be added to their block.

A petition with names of other residents seeking a speed bump was presented to the board.

McCann and Magaldi said they have young children and do not feel safe letting their children play outside.

McCann, who has a son with autism, said she feels as if she needs to move in order to keep her child safe.

The board said it would look into the matter and discuss a solution.

Trustee Richard Pallisco suggested street signs as a start.

Montreuil said as far as immediate action the village will contact the Nassau County Police Department.

During the meeting the board also voted to deny a special use request for an applicant to sell packaged food and tobacco products at a convenience store on the corner of Jericho Turnpike and South 10th Street.

The vote was 3-0, with Trustee Richard Coppola and Berger abstaining as they were not at the hearing in May.

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