Village of Mineola Mayor Scott Strauss said NYU Langone Hospital-Long Island offered a plan to build a 230-foot-tall building but he rejected it.
He said the building was part of a billion-dollar investment the hospital wanted to make in its facilities.
Strauss made the disclosures during a September meeting of the Mineola Chamber of Commerce.
In the early months of 2020, Strauss said, representatives from the hospital discussed some of the improvements they wanted to make to the facility with village officials in a virtual meeting. Strauss said he and other village officials informed them that there would be some rules and regulations under the village code the hospital would have to adhere to, which reportedly caught the Langone representatives off guard.
“They were shocked when I told them that ‘I just can’t give you approval,’” Strauss said during the meeting. “I told them ‘This is an approval process and I’m only one of five votes.’”
NYU Langone, in a statement to Blank Slate Media, confirmed the conversation with the village but said plans to construct the building are no longer being considered.
“NYU Langone Health was previously in dialog with the Mayor’s office about potential plans for the hospital that included a 230’ tall building but the proposal is no longer under consideration,” according to the statement.
Strauss said he informed hospital representatives of the various documents and applications that need to be submitted, including studies on how proposed developments or changes would impact the surrounding environment and community. Strauss said hospital officials came up with a plan to “put up a 230-foot-tall building on the property.”
“They were stumped when I said ‘no,’” Strauss said. “Apparently, they spent millions of dollars on these studies, architectural designs, and other things and I told them, ‘No, you’re not doing that.’”
Hospital officials, according to Strauss, told him that the upgrades and facilities outlined in the reported plans were needed amenities for a “modern hospital.” Strauss, the assistant vice president of corporate security at Northwell Health, said he told the leadership team he understands what the needs of a modern hospital are.
“They need private rooms and things like that and have a hotel type of setup,” Strauss said. “But not in Mineola. So they weren’t happy with me, but as I said earlier, I live here and they don’t.”
It is not clear whether the hospital has submitted applications to put up the “230-foot-tall building” Strauss outlined during the meeting. Mineola Clerk Joseph Scalero, in an October email to Blank Slate Media said, “The hospital is always expanding and altering its campus. At any given time they may have numerous applications submitted to the Village in various stages, i.e., submitted, under review, approved, etc.”
The hospital, formerly known as NYU Winthrop Hospital, changed its name to NYU Langone Hospital-Long Island last year. It was originally known as Nassau Hospital upon its founding in 1896, later incorporating Winthrop into its name. The hospital was merged into the NYU Langone system in August 2019.
“NYU Langone Hospital-Long Island has made our NYU Langone Health system even stronger, as we bring its greatest strengths into our broader network,” said Dr. Robert I. Grossman, dean and CEO of NYU Langone Health. “NYU Langone Health provides one standard of care – excellence in quality and safety – no matter where that care is received within our health system.”