Middle Neck Road advisory committee gets slight shake-up

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Middle Neck Road advisory committee gets slight shake-up
Village of Great Neck Mayor Pedram Bral announces the members of the citizens advisory committee, following a public safety meeting. (Photo by Janelle Clausen)

The advisory committee for revitalizing the Middle Neck Road corridor experienced a slight shake-up since last week, with two members appointed by Village of Great Neck Mayor Pedram Bral replacing two others who could not make the time commitment.

Attorney Gary Slobin, who is also a member of the executive board of Temple Beth-El, and Alan Steinberg, who works in real estate, are replacing Adam Schneider and Laleh Asher on the committee.

“Alan and Gary replaced two members who determined they did not have the time to put in at this time,” Katie Dugan, the deputy village clerk, said by email.

The members of the committee are now Sam Yellis, a teacher at the Village School, longtime resident Jean Pierce, Alan Steinberg, Gary Slovin, Effie Namdar, Jonathan Yunason and Michael Hauptman.

Six of the seven members of the citizens advisory committee reside in or have property in the Village of Great Neck, the village’s final 2018 assessment roll suggests, with Jonathan Yunason not listed.

Yunason’s name was provided two separate ways to the Great Neck News: as Yunason and Yunatanov. Neither surname appeared in the assessment roll.

Bral said Yunason was raised in Great Neck and that the thought of returning to the village “has crossed his mind.”

“He was passionate about Great Neck and was thrilled that we’re doing something to bring Great Neck back to what it used to be,” Bral said. “Even though he doesn’t live here currently, he has great love for here.”

According to his LinkedIn profile, Yunason is the president of 925 Capital Group, a private equity firm, and the founder of REDA Group, a real estate development firm. Both are New York City-based firms.

An email sent to Yunason requesting a comment on his membership and interest in the committee was not returned.

Each member of the committee will also get an official village email address to use as part of their membership in the group, Dugan and Bral said.

Board of Zoning Appeals Chair Dennis Grossman and Architectural Review Committee member Afshin Dilmanian, both village residents, will be liaisons to the committee.

The intent to form a committee was announced in March, with an objective of getting community input, working as a liaison to the board and brainstorming ideas based on a plan created by VHB, the village’s engineering consultant on the project.

Bral previously said the purpose of the committee was to brainstorm how to provide incentives for developers to “create what we, as a community, as residents, want to have.”

The most important requirement was the ability to dedicate time and effort to the committee and reach out to the community, Bral said. Other qualifications included “some understanding of what’s important and not important.”

“We wanted to get a broad spectrum of people,” Bral said, listing teachers, lawyers, developers and financiers as examples, to find out what’s “realistic” and what the community wants and needs.

A presentation of the committee’s findings could potentially be presented in May, Bral added.

VHB had analyzed possible changes to the village’s zoning law and areas for potential development along part of Middle Neck Road, an artery of the peninsula, and East Shore Road.

Some of its ideas included raising the maximum allowable building height, utilizing mixed-used development, adding traffic calming measures at certain intersections and easing parking restrictions.

That full draft report can be found on the village’s website.

Officials previously said the study follows a 2013 corridor study conducted by the previous administration, which brought about incentive and overlay districts but not the results the village sought.

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