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Letters to Town


www.manhassetpreservation.org

We are a growing group of Manhasset families that are dedicated to the preservation of our "small town" neighborhood character, the preservation of our open spaces and natural environment and the preservation of our cultural and historic qualities.

You can help to preserve Manhasset by contacting:

Norman Nemec AIA, President
John Petrakis, Vice President 
MANHASSET PRESERVATION SOCIETY
 
email address:
nsai@optonline.net  

For information about your Manhasset Civic Association please visit the Council of Greater Manhasset Civic Associations website at: www.manhassetcivic.org/

For information about events at the Manhasset Public Library please visit www.manhassetlibrary.org

August 8th, 2014
By Richard Brummel
contact: rbrummel@att.net

Christopher Morley Park Air Stripper Protest by Richard Brummel;
You may have heard about a public 'stampede' to take over some forested land in Christopher Morley Park to construct an "air-stripper" for the Roslyn Water District.  Environmental groups and park users have spoken out, and three residents have sued.  The lawsuit is pending, with a decision expected in Supreme Court.
Everyone's help is needed to pressure the Nassau County Legislature not to give up any parkland.  They may vote in the next few weeks.
By way of history: the water district shut off a well in Roslyn Estates in November when it discovered high levels of Freon.  Its emergency plan was to erect an aeration facility at the well site, next to homes, but public outcry led the Town of North Hempstead which finances the District, to pressure it to build in Christopher Morley Park instead.
Within the park, the District plan calls for a 320 foot long roadway into the heart of the 40 acre recreational park.  In the forest, a half acre compound will be at least partially fenced in, with lights and they will construct a 30 foot tall building for the air stripper and another building.  Vegetation and healthy trees will be cleared.
The plans have been officially opposed by the Sierra Club LI Group, the Green Party of Nassau County and hundreds of users of Christopher Morley Park who have signed a petition.  The air stripper is supposedly safe, and many already operate in residential neighborhoods around LI.

For more information see Facebook: Ad Hoc Committee to Protect Christopher Morley Park, or contact Richard Brummel at rbrummel@att.net or 516-238-1646.

Mark Kinnucan, Chairman
Sierra Club of Long Island Group
with tagged trees in Christopher Morley Park.

Richard Brummel (front center kneeling) with fellow Christopher Morley Park Preservationists including Professor and Botanist Eric C. Morgan SUNY Farmingdale.

June 4th, 2013

Breaking News!

Majestic 87 Room Gold Coast Historic Mansion to be demolished in two years.
The Brady Mansion located in the Village of North Hills known as the Jesuit St. Ignatius Retreat House has been sold to an unknown developer.  Sources at St. Ignatius say that the developer plans to build upscale homes on the 33 acre site of pristine woods and fields after tearing down the 93 year old Tudor Revival home built by Industrialist Nicholas Frederic Brady and his wife Genevieve Garvan Brady.  The home was named "Inisfada" by the Bradys which in Gaelic translates to "Long Island".

SPLIA (Society for the Preservation of Long Island Antiquities) has placed the Brady Mansion on their "watch list" of threatened Historic Structures.  The Brady Mansion according to Alexandra Wolfe of SPLIA is also on the list of eligible State and Federal Historic Landmarks.

Plans are underway by Preservationists across Long Island to save the Building however the Village of North Hills has no Historic Preservation Board.

See photos below of the final farewell Mass held at St. Ignatius on Sunday June 2nd.















Last update: Attorney William DiConza has secured a Court Injunction against Apple Bank.


In the wake of last weeks decision by Apple Bank to withdraw a BZA application to extend their parking lot into a Residential Zone by eliminating a 20 year old Restrictive Covenant and a 30 foot  Landscape Buffer Zone local residents came home from work yesterday and were in shock when it was made apparent that Apple Bank spray painted approximately 20 mature Eastern White Pine and a very large 2 foot diameter Norwegian Maple Tree.  It's believed the trees were painted for Apple Banks tree removal service company.

The twenty trees slated for removal by Apple Bank form a protective landscape barrier as well as natural solar shading that protects the homeowner and his family at 35 Onderdonk Avenue.
According to an email from John Crewe, the President of the Manhasset Park Civic Association, he indicated that in a telephone conversation today with Apple Banks Executive Mitch Jacobs, Apple Bank believes they are within their right to cut down all these trees in a Residential district and within a front yard of Onderdonk Avenue.
Local residents counter that this tree canopy serves as an important visual starting point of their residential neighborhood.





There has been no word from the Town of North Hempstead Building Department Commissioner Kevin Cronin as to whether Apple Bank's belief is correct that they are within their rights to cut all these trees down.  Councilwoman Anna Kaplan confirmed this morning that no tree removal applications have been filed by Apple Bank.
Richard Bentley, President of the Council of Greater Manhasset Civic Associations instructed local residents to call 911 for the Nassau County Police Department in the event that Apple Bank attempts to cut these trees down.

A close up view of three of the trees painted orange by Apple Bank.

The homeowner at 35 Onderdonk Avenue received a letter from Apple Bank this morning instructing the homeowner that he had 14 days to remove the 20 year old wood stockade fence that provides additional screening between his rear yard and the Apple Bank parking lot. 
In response to Apple Banks actions William DiConza Esq. (the Attorney for the homeowner at 35 Onderdonk Avenue) filed a Court Injunctive Restraining Order barring Apple Bank from removal of the twenty trees.  In addition, Mr. DiConza has also filed an Adverse Possession proceeding, which if approved by the Court will allow the 20 year old stockade fence to remain.

Saturday September 22nd, 2012

100 Years!  Happy Birthday Manhasset Lakeville Fire Department!!!


Today, Manhasset's Bravest were joined by the Plandome, Port Washington, Great Neck Alert and Vigilant, Roslyn and Albertson Fire Departments in a memorable parade along Plandome Road to celebrate 100 years of dedicated service.  They were greeted with cheers by Manhasset residents as the parade extended from Stonytown Road all the way to Memorial Field.

To learn more about or to become a volunteer please visit the Manhasset Lakeville Fire Department's website at www.mlfd.com.
The Manhasset Lakeville Fire Department consists of five Companies extending from the Queen's border to Roslyn.  It is one of Long Islands largest and oldest Volunteer Fire Departments.  Each Company may have different equipment and knowledge depending on their location such as a highway and they work with other adjacent Fire Departments in Great Neck, Port Washington, Plandome, Roslyn and Albertson during emergencies which are termed "mutual support calls".  


















Friday September 21st, 2012
 
APPLE BANK
withdraws BZA Variance Application to expand parking lot into a residential Zone.  The 20 year old restrictive covenant by Mary Jane Davies and Civic Association Opposition Group is preserved.






Tuesday April 17th, 2012

Michael Puntillo and Reverend Lowry made a Site Plan Presentation to the Town Board tonight with several local residents generally supporting the project.
The site plan proposes to restore the 1929 Gothic Style Christ Church Parish Building at 1355 Northern Boulevard for adaptive reuse to small office suites as well as the west wing for Church use and the construction of a new Citibank Branch in front with drive through tellers.  The Citibank Branch was coined "the economic engine".

Traffic is still an issue but much discussion also focused on the treacherous intersection during morning rush hour for drivers heading west on George Street at the Plandome Road intersection and for a need to install three way stop signs at the opposite corner on Onderdonk Avenue.

Upon a motion by Councilwoman Anna Kaplan the Town Board voted a unanimous aye for Site Plan Approval. 
At 9:10 pm Supervisor Jon Kaiman, last to cast the final vote, made a closing statement stating he thanked the community of Manhasset for participating in the planning process and to Michael Puntillo and Reverend Lowry for working with the residents and demonstrating flexibility, cooperation and creativity.

According to the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Landmarks, the entire Christ Church campus is eligible for NYS and Federal Landmarking.

TONIGHT APRIL 17TH, 2012 AT 7:30 PM THE TOWN BOARD WILL HAVE A PUBLIC HEARING FOR SITE PLAN APPROVAL ON THE APPLICATION BY MICHAEL PUNTILLO TO CONSTRUCT A NEW CITIBANK IN FRONT OF THE CHRIST CHURCH PARISH HALL BUILDING AND TO CONVERT MOST OF THE EXISTING PARISH HALL BUILDING INTO OFFICE SPACES.  IF APPROVED THIS WILL BE THE LAST PUBLIC HEARING ON THIS MATTER.
ALL MANHASSET RESIDENTS ARE ENCOURAGED TO ATTEND.
THE PUBLIC HEARING WILL BE AT TOWN HALL, 220 PLANDOME ROAD, MANHASSET NY

AGENDA:
4. A PUBLIC HEARING ON THE APPLICATION OF 1355 NORTHERN ASSOCIATES, LLC FOR AN AMENDMENT TO A PRIOR CHANGE OF ZONE APPROVAL FOR THE PREMISES LOCATED AT 1355 NORTHERN BOULEVARD, MANHASSET, NEW YORK AND DESIGNATED ON THE NASSAU COUNTY LAND AND TAX MAP AS SECTION 3, BLOCK 83, PART OF LOT 13 AND PART OF LOT 23.
Synopsis: The purpose of the amendment is to remove the condition specifying how the property is to be subdivided.
5. A PUBLIC HEARING ON THE APPLICATION OF 1355 NORTHERN ASSOCIATES, LLC FOR THE SITE PLAN REVIEW FOR THE PREMISES LOCATED AT 1355 NORTHERN BOULEVARD, MANHASSET, NEW YORK AND DESIGNATED ON THE NASSAU COUNTY LAND AND TAX MAP AS SECTION 3, BLOCK 83, PART OF LOT 13 AND PART OF LOT 23.
Synopsis: The purpose of the proposal is for the renovation of an existing three story 22,894 square feet parish hall to include 19,680 square feet of office space and a new 8,177 square feet parish house. Also proposed is a 4,000 square feet free standing bank branch with two drive through teller/ATM lanes.
6. A PUBLIC HEARING TO CONSIDER AN APPLICATION OF 1355 NORTHERN ASSOCIATES, LLC FOR A SPECIAL USE PERMIT FOR REAL PROPERTY LOCATED AT 1355 NORTHERN BOULEVARD, MANHASSET, NEW YORK AND DESIGNATED ON THE NASSAU COUNTY LAND AND TAX MAP AS SECTION 3, BLOCK 83, PART OF LOT 13 AND PART OF LOT 23.
Synopsis: The purpose of the special use permit is for the proposed two drive-through teller/ATM lanes located at the bank branch.

Mark your calendar for 2PM April 15th, 2012. 
The Manhasset Public Library and the Manhasset Preservation Society will host the screening of the classic 1958 film "A Night To Remember" as well as a Titanic Exhibit and Presentation marking the 100th Anniversary of the fateful night when the Titanic struck an iceberg on it's maiden voyage to New York City.  705 passengers survived the tragedy but 1,503 men, women and children perished due to insufficient numbers of lifeboats on board.
A Night To Remember by Naval Historian Walter Lord recounts the minute by minute events of April 15th 1912 in captivating detail.  This was made possible by the extensive research and survivor interviews he conducted in the early to mid 1950's.  Norman and Sherry Nemec had an opportunity to visit Walter Lord at his NYC Apartment/Titanic museum a year before he passed away.  Known as the foremost Titanic Historian Walter Lord devoted his life to the Titanic and is credited for preserving the events that to this day remain as the worlds most horrific maritime disaster.






Historic Spinney Hill
By Norman Nemec


Manhasset celebrated African American History Month on February 15th and February 23rd at the Manhasset Library which included the premiere screening of the now popular film documentary Spinney Hill- The African American History of Manhasset and Great Neck.  Film producers Lloyd Means and Dedrick Johnson engaged the audience with a question and answer session at the first screening.  Over three hundred residents attended both events and were rewarded by an in depth perspective of our most western neighborhood, and notably the oldest Manhasset neighborhood.  The two evenings confirmed what many already know, there is unity in our community. The events were enhanced with display boards featuring archived photos and news articles about Spinney Hill, Valley Road and Northern Boulevard west of present day Community Drive as well as a short musical slide show documentary by the Manhasset Preservation Society featuring additional archived photos (courtesy of Dr. Jack Binder, Town Archivist) including legendary football star Jim Brown and music by the Temptations. The history of Spinney Hill which includes the areas of Whitney Pond, North Shore University Hospital and East Shore Road (The Valley) stretches back to pre-colonial times when Mattinecock Indians inhabited this area of natural abundance and beauty.  Shelter Rock claims its name from those very same Native Americans.  Up until the late nineteenth century freed African American farmers, some with Native American ancestry, and white farmers lived and worked in a land without boundaries and fences.  They shared a common ground, they were hard working and poor.  Their one room schoolhouse was desegregated long before the word even existed. After the 1898 Railroad Trestle was constructed the Manhasset Business District made it’s slow migration up to Plandome Road yet the black owned businesses on Northern Boulevard and East Shore Road held fast to Spinney Hill.  Our Manhasset was still an agricultural community back then but large tracts of farmland slowly transformed into magnificent estates and exquisite suburban neighborhoods. Agriculture diminished and well paying domestic jobs for the rich attracted more African Americans from the south.  The foundations of a thriving African American  Community took shape in these early days however with a price to pay- boundaries with fences and a segregated African American Valley School.  In the years to come a one room medical clinic on Valley Road grew at a feverish pace to become North Shore University Hospital.  Jobs and training to local Spinney Hill residents meant prosperity.  The James Hotel on Northern Boulevard featured some of the best Jazz musicians of the mid 20th Century.  Four local churches provided after school education and recreation for the children of Spinney Hill.  By the mid 1960’s education took the drivers seat in Spinney Hill and a hard fought battle was won to desegregate the scholastic short comings of the Valley School.  The vitality of Spinney Hill was also drawn from the numerous locally owned African American businesses that served as role models for the young.  By the 1970’s New York State and Real Estate Developers had set their eyes on a small stretch of 25A for Urban Renewal.  A concerted effort was made to convince the local black owned businesses to move out temporarily so that the developers and the state could rebuild Spinney Hill’s commercial downtown.  Afterwards they were told that the black owned businesses could move back in to new modern buildings.  That never happened and an important part of Spinney Hill was lost to what was dubiously called progress.  Guest of Honors Councilwomen Anna Kaplan and Vivianna Russell (Town of North Hempstead’s first African American Councilwoman) spoke briefly at the second screening.  With their help and the help of our Community we look forward to preserving this special neighborhood by creating opportunities for it’s young residents and by recognizing the important cultural history of Spinney Hill. 

Guest of Honors North Hempstead Councilwomen Anna Kaplan and Vivianna Russell attended the second presentation and spoke briefly to the audience;
"I thought the presentation was great. It showed a part of Spinney Hill that I never knew. I am glad that presentations like these are able to shed light on the great African Americans that have contributed to the overall culture and success of the Town of North Hempstead."  
Viviana L. Russell Councilwoman
Town of North Hempstead
"Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do."

A PACKED
HOUSE AT
SPINNEY HILL
SCREENING!

SECOND SHOW
AT MANHASSET
LIBRARY IS ADDED
FOR FEBRUARY 23RD
7 TO 9 PM.

The program started at 7 PM with a Manhasset Preservation Society 8 minute musical slide show production featuring dozens of old Spinney Hill and Valley Road archived photos courtesy of Dr. Jack Binder, Town of North Hempstead Archivist and music by the Temptations.  Dedrick Johnson and Lloyd Means then spoke briefly about the film.
Spinney Hill- The African American History of Manhasset and Great Neck was screened and ran about one hour. 
After the film Dedrick and Lloyd engaged the audience with a question and answer session.  Topics such as the Manhasset School desegregation of the 60's and the urban renewal of the 70's were among those discussed.

2-15-12 ALMOST 200 RESIDENTS ATTEND THE MANHASSET FILM SCREENING OF SPINNEY HILL- THE AFRICAN AMERICAN HISTORY OF MANHASSET AND GREAT NECK.  FILM PRODUCERS DEDRICK JOHNSON AND LLOYD MEANS WITH SOME CAST MEMBERS DELIVERED A SPECTACULAR EVENING AT THE MANHASSET LIBRARY.

DEDRICK JOHNSON DISCUSSES THE TWO YEARS OF RESEARCH IT TOOK FOR THE FILM AND CONFIRMS THE FILM IS ONLY VOLUME ONE. 

 

LLOYD MEANS TALKS ABOUT GROWING UP IN SPINNEY HILL.  "WERE IT NOT FOR THE MANHASSET GREAT NECK EOC AND THE CONFIDENCE AND SKILLS WE GAINED AT THE CENTER WE WOULD NOT BE HERE TONIGHT !" 
SOME AUDIENCE MEMBERS CAME FROM AS FAR AS BROOKLYN TO SEE THE FILM.

VISIT http://www.mgneoc.org/  FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THE MANHASSET GREAT NECK EOC

"EXCELLENT !!!" DR. CHARLES CARDILLO, MANHASSET SCHOOL SUPERINTENDENT

"AN OUTSTANDING SUCCESS"  RICHARD BENTLEY, CGMCA PRESIDENT

 

FROM LEFT TO RIGHT: FILM PRODUCERS DEDRICK JOHNSON AND LLOYD MEANS, MANHASSET PRESERVATION SOCIETY NORMAN NEMEC AND JOHN PETRAKIS AND MANHASSET LIBRARY DIRECTOR MAGGIE GOUGH.








The Manhasset Preservation Society will host the film documentary screening of "SPINNEY HILL The African American History of Manhasset and Great Neck" on February 15th 7-9 pm at the Manhasset Public Library.

We invite all residents to come and learn about this special community, it's history and it's people!

See Channel 7 Eyewitness News SANDRA BOOKMAN'S TV interview with LLOYD MEANS and DEDRICK JOHNSON on the HERE AND NOW Show; http://abclocal.go.com/wabc/video?id=8530321












12-23-11
NEWSDAY'S Emi Endo "OUR TOWNS" columnist on the Christ Church Rezoning, click on link:

http://www.newsday.com/long-island/nassau/conversion-of-manhasset-church-hall-sought-1.3407762

NYS Historic Preservation Office Confirms "Parish Building" is eligible for State and Federal Landmark Designation.

Board of Zoning and Appeals approval next step for Developer Michael Puntillo.







1802: Episcopalians buy land for $195.46 from George Onderdonk

1840: Cemetery opens for burial plots at $10 a plot.

1868: Church is remodeled.

1912: Struck by lightening, the church burns down.

1913-1916: Church design by Architect Frederick H. Briggs is built.

1929-1932: Parish Hall is built.

2012: Residents hope to see Parish Hall preserved and renovated for adaptive reuse to office space.

12-18-11
TATTERED BANNERS

TO BE REMOVED
Local Manhasset Resident and
Civic Association Member
Sue Auriemma gets help from
Newsday's JUDY CARTWRIGHT
to have Nassau County Art Museum
abandoned banners removed
from electrical utility lines on
Northern Boulevard





Abandoned Banners
on Northern Boulevard
are an eyesore and a
fire hazard.

If you see a problem,
an eyesore or a hazard
and local Government
is slow or doesn't respond
call Judy Cartwright at
NEWSDAY 631-843-2700
or email Judy at;
Judy.Cartwright@newsday.com
watchdog@newsday.com
 
photo by Sue Auriemma

12-13-11
Town Board Unanimously
Approves
Rezoning of
Christ Church to make way
for New Citibank Branch
and funding for Parish Building
Restoration.
See below for site plan and images.


Mark your calendar for 7:30 PM
December 13th, 2011.
The Town Board has tentatively
set this date for the application
to rezone Christ Church
located at 1355 Northern Boulevad.

Location of public hearing:
Town Hall
220 Plandome Road
Manhasset NY

On Wednesday November 9th 2011, Michael Puntillo of Jobco presented a new set of plans and renderings of the proposed Citibank Branch to the Council of Greater Manhasset Civic Associations.
Mr. Puntillo explained that the income generated from the new Citibank Branch will allow financing to restore and renovate the Christ Church Parish Hall.  The Parish Hall which was built in the early 1930's represents an Architectural Style of that period called Collegiate Gothic.  According to Alexandra Wolfe of SPLIA this building is listed by NYS Department of Parks and Historic Landmarks as eligible for Landmark Designation.
Mr. Puntillo told the President of the CGMCA Richard Bentley and other Civic Presidents that Citibank is firm on the design of the new branch as it represents their branding.  He went further and said the building will be low so as to not detract from the much larger Parish Hall Building which will be washed with flood lights at night to provide a dramatic Architectural composition of modern and classical, not too different than I M Pei's glass pyramids at the Louvre.
Some members of the Civic Associations were disappointed that Citibank could not make a better effort at blending the design with the Parish Building.  Your author suggested that at the very least the grey stucco on the bank should match the Parish Hall stucco facade and that more landscaping and less asphalt would help.  The plans call for the Citibank blue accent to be internally illuminated however Mr. Puntillo said that will not be the case.
Although the local Manhasset residents who have homes adjacent to this site generally have no objections to the proposed re-zoning there still remains concerns about increased traffic through the parking lot to and from George Street, a loss of some existing green buffers and a need to understand what guarantees will both the Developer and the Town provide that once the property is rezoned that another plan, other than restoring and renovating the Parish Building, will not occur.
The residents do not want the property rezoned if the Parish Building is not preserved.  

Site location of the proposed Citibank Branch.

A rough photoshop view of the proposed Citibank in front of the venerable Christ Church Parish Hall.

Proposed Site Plan of new bank and application for a rezoning from Residential B to Business A and Parking District.










Spinney Hill Documentary and History Exhibit coming to Manhasset in February 2012.  The actual date and location will follow shortly.
The well made and professional movie documentary was created by Lloyd Means and Dedrick Johnson and runs approximately 60 minutes.  It focuses on life in Spinney Hill from the 1950's to the 1970's.  During the 1950's Spinney Hill residents had many African American owned businesses along Northern Boulevard and today's Valley business District on East Shore Road.  The coming of North Shore University Hospital brought training and well paying jobs for many of it's residents as well.  Back then Community Drive was an old crooked single lane dirt road called Valley Road.  In the 1960's the residents successfully managed to desegregate their Valley School so as to allow their children the benefits of a better education that the rest of Manhasset had.  Urban Renewal in the 1970's by NYS along nearby Northern Boulevard forced all the African American owned businesses out- to allow construction of the present day office buildings west of the intersection of Community Drive.

The history exhibit will also focus on the Mattinecock Indians that lived in a village called Sintsink which is believed to be the location around Whitney Pond and present day Spinney Hill.  An ample supply of clean fresh spring water and close proximity to the Manhasset Bay allowed the Mattinecocks Indians to flourish until the first Dutch and English settlers arrived to stake claim to this land.

See link below for the Spinney Hill Documentary Screening hosted by the Great Neck Historical Society:

www.antonnews.com/greatneckrecord/news/18952-spinney-hill-focus-of-great-neck-historical-society-meeting.html








Restoration work is underway at the Quaker Meeting House on Northern Boulevard.  This photo taken during the summer reveals the no-nonsense original timber framing of the 1800's era structure.

A view of Manhasset and North Hempstead as it appeared in the late 1800's.
Look hard and you might find the Quaker Meeting House.










On Friday, November 11th, 2011 the Manhasset Park District and American Legion Hall unveiled the new World War II Memorial Monument at Patriots Park on Shelter Rock Road to honor the 416,800 Americans who made the ultimate sacrifice to rid the world of Hitler and the Axis so as to allow future generations around the world the gift of freedom.
According to the memorial designer Bernard Rolston the water which contains a map of the world allows one to reflect on those sacrifices.  The map contains small LED lights at locations of major US battles.  The continuous waterfall represents America's continued roll in the world to preserve freedom. 

The Manhasset World War II Memorial was designed by Manhasset Parks District Commissioner Bernard Rolston and built entirely by the employees of the Manhasset Park District under the supervision of Manager Michael Ilkiw.








NEWS RELEASE JUNE 19th, 2011
Bath Club Site- Proposed Parking Lot Expansion.
Village of North Hills eyes property near Train Station for a new commuter parking lot.
Manhasset Valley Park Renovation- you guessed it, includes a new parking lot.

Wednesday, July 27th, 2011
Residents on Onderdonk Avenue and George Street along with Manhasset Park Civic Association President John Crewe met last night with Reverend David Lowry and Developer Michael Puntillo to review Mr. Puntillo's most recent proposed site plan.
The site plan proposes to renovate and restore the Christ Church Parish Building, construct a new bank in front of it to offset the cost of the Parish Building renovation and add parking on the site to comply with the Town's Code.
The preliminary site plan was approved by the residents with certain conditions; no AC equipment or dumpsters in the rear yard which is adjacent to several homes, preserve all existing trees on the eastern lot lines, preserve all other existing trees to the maximum extent possible and to not rezone any property beyond the rear wall of the Parish Building to Business District.  Rezoning property beyond the Parish Building's rear wall to a Parking District would be acceptable.
Mr. Puntillo will refine his site plan and provide a Landscape Plan shortly for the residents to comment on. 

Tuesday, July 19th 2011
Despite a malfunctioning air conditioning system over one hundred Strathmore residents packed into a standing room only Town Board hearing to object to a proposed rezoning of the Bath Club site from Residential A District to a Parking District.
Paul Bloom the Attorney representing the Apple Store, Daffys and vacant Bank Landlord started the hearing by asking the Board to restore the site.  He explained that in 1992 the owner of the Bath Club site Mr. Belanich applied for a zoning change of the site from a Parking District to a Business District.  The Town Board at the time denied his application and instead rezoned the site to Residential A District.  According to Paul this sterilized the site even though Belanich was able to build four new homes on a portion of the site.  Paul also stated the the current amount of parking spaces for the Apple Store, Daffys and the vacant Bank exceeds the minimum Town Code requirements however given that the Apple Store has a high turnover additional parking is needed.
Eschbacher presented a traffic study done in April of 2011 and claimed once again that the additional parking will have no adverse effect on traffic.
Douglas Dreyer President of the Strathmore Civic Association was the next speaker, he stated that the civic association is opposed to the rezoning and the traffic study was flawed in that it was prepared during a low peak usage and not high peak such as holidays.  He also stated that the current traffic on The Gate is overly excessive given that it is the only access and egress route for Strathmore residents as well as serving the Americana shopping mall, Crate and Barrel truck delivery bay and Apple, Daffys and Bank. 
Richard Bentley President of the Council of Greater Manhasset Civic Association then spoke and stated that the Council representing over a dozen civic associations in Manhasset was unanimously opposed to the proposed rezoning and at no time did the applicant ever attempt to first meet and discuss the plan with the civic associations.
More than a dozen other residents spoke out against rezoning claiming that the traffic patterns on The Gate are a nightmare and the Landlord has never attempted to improve the traffic flow such as simple stop signs and other traffic devices to improve traffic. One of the residents who lives adjacent to the site said Belanich built a thirty foot high three tiered retaining wall next to her backyard and suffers property damage now due to a constant water runoff and erosion onto her property.  Despite attempts to seek help from the Town, no one has ever looked into the matter to alleviate this condition.
Supervisor Jon Kaiman continued the hearing to the next Town Board hearing on August 2nd, 2011.

July 19th Town Board Hearing
to Rezone Bath Club

The Bath Club in its Glory Days

The Manhasset Strathmore Bath Club Site,
also known as the Belanich Property as it is
today, a vacant parcel within the Residential
A District of the Town of North Hempstead.

For years the Bath Club Site has sat vacant as a developer Mr. Belanich attempted without success to have the parcel rezoned for Commercial Use.  The property abuts several homes and it is in a Residential Zone A.
Along comes The Apple Store and a multitude of Apple shoppers. 
The Bath Club Site will be on the Town Board's Agenda on July 12th, 7:30 PM, 220 Plandome Road Manhasset NY to consider an application to rezone the Bath Club Site to a Parking District.  Community opposition to this proposed rezoning application appears to be growing.  The Council of Greater Manhasset Civic Associations has had several meetings to discuss this application however a formal position has not yet been released.
Ironically, the same Town Board is considering a condemnation proceeding to acquire the Roslyn Country Club, which although is larger than the Bath Club Site was used for many years as a community gathering place for 600 Roslyn Residents.
 
Residents who wish to provide their thoughts can do so, just click "Blog" or "What do you think?"" on the left margin of this homepage.

According to a NEWSDAY article on page G41 of the Sunday June 19th edition the North Hills Trustees Gerry Cohen and Dennis Sgambati indicated that the Village of North Hills is considering the purchase of real estate near the Manhasset LIRR Station so as to convert the property into a commuter parking lot for North Hills Residents.
The article reads:
"Sgambati and Cohen said the administration is seeking to put some of the $37 million toward providing parking for village residents at the Long Island Rail Road station in Manhasset.  Sgambati said they are looking at several buildings within a half block of the LIRR in an attempt to change the buildings into a parking facility for the residents of North Hills".
The $37 million dollars was raised by the Village through past incentive zoning projects where developers paid into the fund for permission to build in excess of zoning laws.

An aerial rendering of the proposed renovation of the Manhasset Valley Park, by the Town of North Hempstead.

Town of North Hempstead Press Release
on the Manhasset Valley Park renovation.

There is no update on the Christ Church redevelopment project by Developer Michael Puntillo.  The last update was that he is developing a proposal to renovate the Christ Church Parish Building and to construct a new Bank Building near the front of the Parish Building.

There is no update on the Plandome Road Visioning Project by the Town of North Hempstead.

Residents are reminded to lock their doors as there has been a rash of burglaries in Manhasset.


Wednesday, October 13th 2010
The reaction was positive but cautious after Developer Michael Puntillo unveiled his new plans for the development of the Christ Church property located at 1355 Northern Boulevard to the Council of Greater Manhasset Civic Associations this evening.
Michael provided a preliminary site plan (see color enhanced version below) which he proposes to renovate and restore the venerable 1920's Gothic Parish Building for adaptive reuse to small affordable rental office suites while allowing the west wing of the building to remain in ownership of the Christ Church Parish for their use.  He explained that the return on investment however would not cover the cost of renovating and restoring the Parish Building, therefore another element would be needed.  That element would be a new drive through bank fronting Northern Boulevard.
In order to allow this plan to fly, he pointed out that the entire lot currently zoned Residential B would need to be sub divided and rezoned to two Business Zone lots, the third lot would remain as presently zoned for the Parish wing.
Norgate Civic leader James Peltzer studied the plan and raised concerns about the type of building a bank would build and whether the architectural style would be in keeping with the other gothic and classical styles along this stretch of Northern Boulevard.  Some members raised concerns about the possible traffic impact that might occur, especially on George Street and whether there would be sufficient parking for Church services on Sunday.  Michael Puntillo stated that the traffic would not be significantly more than if the Parish Building were used for another purpose.  As for Sunday services parking he remarked that the parking lot would be available for Parishners and that on Sundays he did not envision significant parking lot usage by office tenants.
In closing Michael Puntillo stated that this new plan would not require any retaining walls as the existing topography would remain as is, the trash dumpsters would be placed closer to Northern Boulevard and far from the residential properties surrounding this site.
A brief discussion with the Civic Leaders afterwards concluded that this new proposed plan is a substantial improvement over the previous plan to construct a luxury apartment building.  Civic leaders present would not comment on any approvals as they needed time to present the concept to their constituents for feedback.  Your author thanked CGMCA President Richard Bentley for inviting Mr. Puntillo, the Manhasset Preservation Society, Town Supervisor Jon Kaiman, Councilwoman Kitty Poons and Eleanor Lange to this preliminary presentation.  Supervisor Jon Kaiman had to leave early but commented "this is the right way to proceed, start with local Civic leaders and when a consensus is achieved the Town will be in a better position to consider the application for re-development."

Proposed Site Plan Overlay

Wednesday, October 13th 2010
At the monthly Council of Greater Manhasset Civic Association meeting Town Supervisor Jon Kaiman provided an update of the Plandome Road Visioning Project.  "The project is in what you might call bureaucratic mode", the design engineers (RTKF) are seeking State approvals for "infrastructure changes".  Jon said that he will arrange another "local stakeholders meeting within the next month or two".  The state and federal grant money is still there and will not be forfeited.  It's quite possible that the construction bid process could start as early as next spring with construction to follow shortly.
In other news, Jon Kaiman said the town is working on obtaining a cost effective emergency alert system (telephone and email).  The alert system would instantly notify all residents of possible storms and other emergencies.
Jon Kaiman invited all Manhasset Residents to visit the newly renovated Tully Park Pool in New Hyde Park.  Until the end of November the new indoor pool which features water slides and fun for the whole family will be free, but bring some identification that you are a TONH residents and don't forget your swimming trunks!

Tuesday February 23rd, 2010- The Manhasset Community participates in the Plandome Road Visioning Project at the Manhasset High School.  Despite the cold rainy weather over one hundred local residents and shop keepers attended the Plandome Road Visioning Project sponsored by the Town of North Hempstead Supervisor Jon Kaiman.  Site plans and renderings were presented by Wendy Ho, Civil Engineer and Susan Jainchill, Landscape Architect, both members of the design firm AKRF who were selected by the Town Board to develope street calming, safe routes to school and walkable downtown visioning plans.


The presentation for community discussion and input was the culmination of several "Stake Holder Meetings" that were organized by Jon Kaiman and conducted within the last year in Town Hall.  Members include Dr. Charles Cardillo, Superintendent of the Manhasset School District, CSM, The Chamber of Commerce, The Council of Greater Manhasset Civic Associations, MLFD, NCPD, The Manhasset Preservation Society and members of the Towns Planning Department and Highway Department as well as Councilwoman Kitty Poons.  Funding of this project is the result of a $400k Safe Routes To School Federal Grant that Jon Kaiman secured along with an additional $100k state grant obtained through Senator Craig Johnson.  The grant was limited for improvements to a portion of Plandome Road between Memorial Place and Park Avenue (Phase One) however it was AKRF that proposed to include all of Plandome Road for the design study should Town Government acquire future grants.  Therefore the focus of the hearing was specific to the Phase One portion of Plandome Road however sketches and discussions touched upon future phases.


Wendy Ho and Susan Jainchill presented plans and renderings which propose to construct a ten foot wide raised median within the Phase One portion of Plandome Road.  Currently each lane of Plandome Road is 17 feet wide which according to traffic experts is much too wide for a Business District Street and therefore the incidence of speeding and illegal U-Turns is high.  The median along with "Curb Bump Outs" at intersections would not only calm traffic but would provide a shorter crossing distance for pedestrians, especially students from the nearby schools.  The median also provides an area of added pedestrian safety at intersections without traffic signaled cross walks such as Memorial Place and George Streets.  Traffic improvement was also proposed at the intersection of Manhasset Avenue and Plandome Road.  There a second turning lane for eastbound Manhasset Avenue traffic was illustrated as the traffic along Manhasset Avenue is known to back up to Manhasset High School due to the lack of a turning lane at Plandome Road.





The second phase of this project was also presented in preliminary plans which proposes the widening of a portion of the west sidewalk north of Bayview Avenue due to it's very narrow and sloped condition, a narrow median along this section of Plandome Road, a proposed traffic signal and crosswalk at Gaynor Avenue, the widening of the east sidewalk north of Gaynor Avenue and the enlargement of the sidewalk triangle at the intersection of Colonial Parkway.  Portions of enlarged sidewalks would provide areas for new trees, benches, kiosks and other enhanced streetscape tools.  In addition merchants would have better opportunities for sidewalk displays and sales during occassional Business District street fares.

A question and answer session with the community was conducted after the presentation.  Some residents expressed concerns about the loss of parking spaces however Jon emphasized that the Phase One portion does not reduce any street parking.  Another resident issued concerns about cost- again Jon emphasized that the work will be paid for by Government Grants, which will be forfeited to another community if it is not used in Manhasset.  The strongest voice of concern was from the Norgate Civic Association which pointed out that the appearance of the plan emphasizes the area around Town Hall and appears to disregard the George Street and Memorial Street crossings.  Jon assured the Norgate Civic Association that the "Stake Holders" will meet shortly and re-examine this intersection with added pedestrian safety features and will reach out to Norgate before any plans are finalized.  

Although no community plan can be perfect there is good reason to thank Jon Kaiman and the Town Board for devoting time and resources for the benefit of a safer and more sustainable "Main Street" in Manhasset.  For too long as one resident stated, Plandome Road has been neglected.  The opportunities we have will result in a more beautiful downtown, a more walkable downtown where residents will be encouraged to dispense their vehicle when going from one store to another and a safer downtown where (with the combined efforts of good planning and design as well as traffic enforcement) pedestrians and traffic can co-exist without the traffic having the upper hand.

Friday September 25th, 2009- The Town of North Hempstead will no longer seek acquisition of 51 Andrew Street, Town Supervisor Jon Kaiman issued this press release: 

From: Jonathan Kaiman
Sent: Friday, September 25, 2009 4:08 PM
The town will not be going forward at this time in regard to the property located at 51 Andrews Street.  The matter will not be on the calendar at the Tuesday night town board meeting.  We understand that the bank will be moving on with an alternative purchaser.

Sunday September 6th, 2009- The Manhasset Park Civic Association has established an electronic petition and ask for your support and voice to oppose the purchase of 51 Andrew Street by the Town of North Hempstead:                                                                                                                                                   Dear Manhasset Neighbor,
The Town of North Hempstead has placed an accepted bid for $625,000 on a single family home at 51 Andrew Street in Manhasset.  The Town's intent is to use this property to create 10 more parking spaces for Town Hall and use the home for ancillary office space - the specifics to be determined.  Join your neighbors now and sign the petition before the September 8th, Town Board Public Hearing opposing this purchase at
http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/51Andrew/  Manhasset Park Civic Association

Thursday September 3rd, 2009- A Rego Park family was in contract to purchase and deposited $60,000.00 to buy the 51 Andrew Street until the Town of North Hempstead stepped in, see Newsday link;                            http://www.newsday.com:80/long-island/nassau/home-buyer-loses-bidding-war-with-n-hempstead-1.1419968

Monday August 31st, 2009- TONH Supervisor Jon Kaiman and Councilwoman Maria Christina Poons answered questions from about fifty vocal Manhasset residents this evening concerning their plans to purchase 51 Andrew Street for approximately $625,000.00.  According to Jon the purchase would allow the town to acquire ten additional parking spaces and provide room in the house for staffers, possibly Code Enforcement personell which must vacate a Westbury location by December.  A few residents requested that Jon provide better transparency when announcing plans such as this on the Town Board Calendar and to not provide vague intentions days before Town Board Public Hearings.  Other residents questioned whether other options had been explored such as renting parking spaces or purchasing another property such as the vacant Christ Church parking lot, improving the existing allocation of town employee parking spaces, acquiring additional office space by expanding the existing 2nd floor of Town Hall.  One resident stated that in these tough economic times the town should follow what corporations are doing such as doubling up offices and encouraging staffers to commute by car pooling or mass transit.  Another resident pointed out that several commercial property owners in Manhasset lease commuter parking spaces to outside residents from Roslyn to Glen Cove and that these property owners must obtain annual permits from the Town.  The Town has the power to lease these very same parking spaces.  All the residents that attended this meeting were opposed to the proposed purchase of 51 Andrew Street and most believed this plan would create a hardship for the immediate residents, reduce vital property tax revenue and impact the residential single family home character of Andrew Street.  More information about this meeting can be found in todays Newsday by clicking http://www.newsday.com/long-island/nassau/plan-to-buy-manhasset-parking-office-space-draws-fire-1.1412428  See photograph below of meeting.


Friday August 28th, 2009- Supervisor Jon Kaiman has invited local residents for a discussion regarding 51 Andrew Street along with Councilwoman Maria-Christina Poons and himself in the Town Hall Board Room, 220 Plandome Road, at 7:00PM, Monday August 31st.  Local Manhasset Residents are encouraged to attend this important meeting.

Friday August 28th, 2009- Photo (below) of original North Hempstead Town Hall, now a Landmark, with the 51 Andrew Street home in the background.


Thursday August 27th, 2009- The Town of North Hempstead has made an offer to the seller to purchase 51 Andrew Street.  In an email to the adjacent homeowners Supervisor Jon Kaiman vows to not remove the house (see photo below) and to use the house for additional TONH office space during normal working hours.  According to Nassau County Tax Records (www.mynassauproperty.com) the house was built in 1908 which makes the structure 101 Years Old.  Although we cannot confirm with absolute certainty it appears the house at present has had few external Architectural modifications since it was built.  It is possible that this house is eligible for State and Federal Landmarking.

Tuesday August 4th, 2009-  The Town of North Hempstead Town Board approved the retention of an outside Attorney to inquire about and possibly negotiate the purchase of 51 Andrew Street.  This property is located immediately east of the main Town Hall parking lot.  At the public meeting Anne Marie Fruhauf, President of the Council of Greater Manhasset Civic Associations and three families adjacent to the property expressed concern about the impact this may have on their quality of life and property values.  Supervisor Jon Kaiman stated that the Town would directly contact the immediate families and hold a meeting prior to any next step being taken. He also stated that several options would be explored if the Town acquired the property including the possible creation of additional office space and parking for the Town of North Hempstead.  See photograph below of 51 Andrew Street;


Tuesday August 4th, 2009-  The Town of North Hempstead Town Board granted site plan approval for the construction of a 4 story, 60 unit Luxury Apartment Building to be built at the former Glenwood Landing oil depot.  See illustration below;


Friday July 24th, 2009-  The Friends Meeting House located at the corner of Northern Boulevard and Shelter Rock Road has been designated as a NYS Historic Landmark and is currently awaiting Federal Landmark approval.  The Meeting House was built in 1812 and has continued providing religious services to this date.  More information about the history of this site can be found at http://www.nyym.org/manhasset/history.htm.

Virginia Bartos, Historic Preservation Program Analyst of the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation stated that the Landmark Designation will now allow access to government funding for renovation of the structure.  Virginia Bartos and Norman Nemec met at the site and visited other historic sites including the Onderdonk House (State and Federal Landmark) and the Christ Church Buildings and Cemetery which have been designated by the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation as eligible for Historic Landmark designation.

 

Virginia Bartos and Norman Nemec in front of the circa 1812 Friends Meeting House, Manhasset NY 

IMPORTANT NOTICE: On Monday, March 16th 2009 at 5:30PM Nassau County Executive Tom Suozzi and the Nassau County Planning Commission will conduct a public input work session in the Legislative Chamber at 1550 Franklin Avenue Mineola as a first step towards the preparation of a revised draft of the Nassau County Master Plan.  This important event is open to the public, therefore residents and civic groups concerned about the preservation of Manhasset are encouraged to attend.  The Manhasset Preservation Society has listed the following Master Plan objectives to insure that Manhasset remains one of the best villages for raising families on Long Island:  Preservation of Open Space, Preservation of Historic Structures and Districts, Increase of Recreational Fields for Manhasset Children, Decrease of Traffic, Congestion and Development, Creation of Community Facilities for the Elderly and for Families that are challenging the hardships of Autism.  Last year during a Nassau County "Cool Downtowns" Visioning Presentation by County Executive Tom Suozzi, Manhasset was listed as a "Quaint and Historic Downtown" which is why it is not a potentially cool downtown worthy of mixed use development and multiple story apartment buildings.  For this the Manhasset Preservation Society thanks County Executive Tom Suozzi, The Nassau County Planning Commission, Supervisor Jon Kaiman and the Town Board of the Town of North Hempstead.  For more information please visit these websites: Nassau County Master Plan http://www.nassaucountyny.gov/  Cool Downtowns: http://www.nassaucountyny.gov/agencies/Planning/

Tuesday March 10th, 2009- The Town of North Hempstead approved a $175,000.00 bond for the preparation of Design, Planning and Engineering Drawings for the "Plandome Road Traffic Calming and Streetscape Improvement Project".  Due to some RFP issues the Town Board postponed the award of the project until further notice.  The RFP scope of improvements had included pedestrian crosswalks, sidewalk bump outs, traffic calming paving at crosswalks, park benches, various streetscaping, improved lighting, a center median divider along Plandome Road and a striped bicycle lane.

February 1st, 2009- Katie Miller, President of The Coalition for a Safer Manhasset (CSM) presented a petition signed by 1,169 Manhasset Residents to the Town Board of the Town of North Hempstead on January 27th urging the Town to install a pedestrian crosswalk at the corner of Plandome Road and Memorial Place. A rendering of what the crosswalk could look like is shown below.


CSM rend.jpg

   Is the Christ Church Parish Building and Site worthy of preservation? MAPS, MACC and SPLIA say YES!


                Christ Church Parish Building Proposed to be Demolished

January 30th, 2009- The Children's Orchestral Society reminds all Manhasset Residents that admission to Solo and Chamber Music recitals are free at the Christ Church Parish Hall.  These events start at 7:00 PM on Friday February 6th, Friday March 27th, Friday April 24th, Friday May 15th and Friday June12th.  In addition COS is proud to announce that on Friday February 27th and Friday March 6th Master Class performances with both students and guest performers ORLI SHAHAM and ANI KAVAFIAN will be performing Chamber Music Recitals.  Tickets are $15.00 RSVP and applications can be obtained at the COS Website www.childrensorch.org  There you will also find links to performances by COS at Carnegie Hall, Saint Patricks Cathedral and more.  If you require more information you can email COS at masterclass@childrensorch.org.  COS has been performing at the Manhasset Christ Church Parish Hall since it's founding by Dr. H.T. Ma (father of Yoyo Ma) for 15 years now.  The successful continuation of COS is vital for both the "teaching children of the language of music" and preservation of the Christ Church Parish Hall Building located at 1355 Northern Boulevard, Manhasset NY.

December 16th, 2008- The Coalition for a Safer Manhasset (CSM) is seeking petition signatures for the installation of a pedestrian crosswalk on Plandome Road at Memorial Place.  All residents of Manhasset are urged by MAPS to help CSM by submitting their name and address on the attached petition.  The cross walk is needed to help prevent any more pedestrian injuries by speeding motor vehicles on Plandome Road.  This vicinity is heavily used by students of both the Manhasset High School and St. Mary's Church.  "Click here"


Newsday December 6th 2008; By an overwhelming majority vote of 4,129 out of 5,002 Garden City Residents, a resolution to build 108 Luxury Apartments by Avalon Development at St. Pauls 125 year old Episcopal School was defeated.  Residents sited the following concerns: Traffic, Impact on Schools, Preservation of Open Space.  The proposed project would have included the conversion of the old school building into an apartment building as well as the construction of a new building.  The site is located on 48 Acres of Open Space.


Contract between Heritage Developer and Church is extended to December 2009

Application to Rezone Christ Church is withdrawn for now

Questions come up about facts and figures

Council of Greater Manhasset Civic Associations releases rezoning objection to Town Board

Great Neck Sewer Hearing

Strathmore Civic holds meeting at Onderdonk House

Sewer Hook Up hits possible snag.

May 6th Manhasset Chamber meeting report.

14 families most affected by proposed rezoning take a vote; result is unanimous- no rezoning period.

Application for rezoning excluded variances required.

Nassau County Planning Commission issues Special Resolution on proposed Rezoning of Christ Church.  20% of units to be affordable housing and sewer agreement must be negotiated.  Town of North Hempstead official provides clarification.  Click News tab at left for more information and what this means for Manhasset.

Village residents speak out in Manhasset Press Letters to the Editor.  No families are in favor of Rezoning.

Manhasset Parks District official says "Open Space Recreational Field" is still an option.  What are your thoughts?

New Apostolic Church Architect presents an appropriate design agreeable with all 14 local families.

For up to date interactive news on matters that affect all Manhasset residents MAPS provides unbiased and unedited news daily.

If you have any suggestions about how to preserve Manhasset in your immediate neighborhood please contact us.

The tab "Sewer MAP" to the left will bring you to the current Great Neck Water Pollution Control District sewer line that follows Northern Boulevard in Manhasset.

The tab "MAP 1" to the left will bring you to the proposed rezoning and proposed 61 unit 4 1/2 story luxury condo building currently being proposed for the portion of the Christ Church property located at 1355 Northern Boulevard.  Due to overwhelming objections made by local Manhasset residents at a Town Board hearing that was held on April 15th, 2008, the Town Board of the Town of North Hempstead adjourned the application to rezone this property from Residential B (single family homes) to Multiple Residence (RM) by Gothic Church Property LLC.  The next hearing date is May 27th, 2008 at 7:30PM in Town Hall.  All residents concerned about the adverse impact this will bring to Manhasset are advised to attend and state their objections at this public hearing.

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