By Kristy O’Connell
The Village of New Hyde Park is looking to begin planting trees in barren areas of the village without the need for requests from residents, Mayor Lawrence Montreuil said.
Village Trustee Rich Pallisco, chairman of the village Beautification Committee, said nearly all of the trees that have been requested to replace those lost in Hurricane Sandy have either been planted or are accounted for, but some residents have indicated that there are still areas in the village that are missing trees.
Mike Morrissey, a New Hyde Park resident, said that 13 to 15 trees are missing on South Fifth Street, between First and Second avenues.
The trees cost about $150 each, and it would be wasteful to plant trees that are not wanted and won’t be taken care of, Pallisco said at Tuesday’s village Board of Trustees meeting.
“Even if the residents decline the tree, if it’s a particularly bare street, and really needs coverage, then we need to plant the trees,” said Montreuil, who suggested that the village plant and care for trees that have been planted without a prior request.
The Village of New Hyde Park was declared a “Tree City” in March, as part of the Arbor Day Foundation’s “Tree City USA” program, which requires a municipal tree code providing guidance for planting and maintaining trees.
Under this program, the village created a Tree Committee that assists with regulating trees on village property, and will be in charge of organizing the planting and maintenance of trees in areas deemed in need, Montreuil said.
Also on Tuesday, the board approved a special use permit for Mathew Cherian, who intends to renovate his auto shop at 120 S. Second St.
Cemat Auto Service is currently 2,539 square feet and will be expanded to 3,182 square feet following the alterations, said architect Douglas C. Haring of Haring & Associates.
Haring said the expansion would make the south side of the location enclosed and symmetrical with the north side, allowing the owner to keep more cars indoors instead of parked on the street.
The south side would be able to hold four additional vehicles, doubling the interior storage.
Though he expects the expansion will generate more customers, Cherian said he does not foresee parking becoming an issue. He already reached out to several residents on South Second and South First streets and collected a list of signatures supporting the renovation, he said.