Town extends waterfront moratorium, approves Port parking plan

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Town extends waterfront moratorium, approves Port parking plan
Town of North Hempstead Councilwoman Dina De Giorgio represents Port Washington. (Photo courtesy of YouTube)

With a moratorium on waterfront development in Port Washington set to expire, the Town of North Hempstead approved a four-month extension to the building ban during Tuesday’s meeting.

The moratorium, which was approved by the town last December, would have expired at the end of the month. The extension will keep it in place through Nov. 1.

“The town is in the process of reviewing and revising our current [waterfront business] zoning code,” said Councilwoman Dina De Giorgio, who represents Port. “We are expecting to conclude the process before November 1.”

The moratorium affects a stretch of waterfront on Manhasset Bay between the Town Dock and Dolphin Green. The pause in development was spurred by the Knickerbocker, a three-story structure that houses a hotel and condominiums. The building has spurred complaints from residents ever since it was built in 2015.

De Giorgio said that she and other town officials had met with community members for feedback as part of the process. She said another community meeting would be held this summer, although she was not sure exactly when.

“I don’t anticipate extending the moratorium for any additional time, but the additional four months is necessary in order to get enough input from the public… so we can address some of the deficiencies that were in the code,” she said.

The board also passed two amendments regarding parking in Port Washington. The first would permit first responders to park for 72 hours in spaces designated by Port’s Public Parking District.

“Overnight parking is prohibited. However, there are some residents in Port … mostly first responders, New York City firefighters and policemen, and emergency medical services, who work 24-to-36-hour shifts,” De Giorgio said.

The town also approved negotiation of an agreement with the Port Washington school district to use some of the district’s parking lots for commuters while renovations are being undertaken at the lots surrounding the Port Washington LIRR station.

“The good news is that we’re renovating, the bad news is that we’re closing the lot,” De Giorgio said.

An agreement has not been reached, but the resolution gave Town Supervisor Judi Bosworth the power to enter such an agreement with the school district.

Bosworth praised an agreement between the town and Concerned Long Island Mountain Bicyclists. CLIMB will construct and maintain five miles of biking trails in the Hempstead Harbor Nature Sanctuary at no cost to the town. The partnership was announced on Monday but officially approved on Tuesday.

“We’re really excited about this,” Bosworth said.

In Port, the Town Board also approved temporary parking spaces at North Hempstead Beach Park for the Pierce Country Day Camp, the creation of a Child ID program at Manorhaven Beach Park, the hiring of Coastline Consulting & Development for engineering services related to sand removal at the Town Dock, and emergency drainage work at Harbor Road and Valley Road.

In Manhasset, the council approved an agreement for surfacing and playground equipment at Mary Jane Davies Green, across the street from Town Hall. Also approved was a lease agreement with T-Mobile for the maintenance of wireless facilities at Town Hall.

Finally, an agreement between the Village of Lake Success and the town was approved that would allow the two to work together on a hydraulic connection project at the lake.

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