Readers Write: Do not renew permit for parking lot at 17 Myrtle

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To the chairman and members of the Board of Zoning and Appeals for the Town of North Hempstead:

I am writing on behalf of the Council of Greater Manhasset Civic Organizations to urge you to deny renewal of the permit for conditional use as a commercial parking Lot at 17 Myrtle St. in Manhasset.

I am unable to attend the upcoming hearing on the matter and am therefore sending my comments in writing.

I have been a civic leader in Manhasset for the past 15 years and a resident for 23.

I co-chaired the Coalition for a Safer Manhasset, have served as an officer of the Council of Greater Manhasset Civic Associations, was a member of the Plandome Road Visioning Stakeholders and a member of the Plandome Road Parking Committee.

Availability of parking in Manhasset for shoppers, employees and commuters is a topic on which I have focused much time and energy for the past 15 years in addition to pedestrian and motorist safety as it has been greatly affected by an increase in traffic over time.

The property at 17 Myrtle is being used to privately host commuter parkers from outside of the town of Manhasset under the current conditional use permit.

While this permit was granted in the past and a renewal of said permit is being sought, I believe that the BZA should not approve the renewal.  When the original permit was granted, circumstances in the Manhasset community were very different.  The demand for parking was significantly less.

The building of large developments along Shelter Rock Road has significantly increased the population of the town and the need for a variety of types of parking. Traffic in the area was significantly less when the original permit was granted.

Hosting a commercial commuter lot increases traffic to our community when non-residents rent those spaces.  Furthermore, it uses spaces for parking that could be allocated in a manner that benefits the community better.

At this time, a more appropriate use for this property would be to use this space for local employee or shopper parking.

This could be accomplished if the Town of North Hempstead or Manhasset Park District either leased the property or purchased the property from the current owner.  Furthermore, there are concerns that the spaces are not properly sized or marked and there is no handicap parking as required by code.

I understand that the BZA is not tasked with enforcement of parking codes but rather to decide whether the owners qualify for a renewal of their conditional use permit.

Due to the fact that the conditions of the area and the needs of the community have changed since this original permit was issued, I believe it warrants denying the renewal of the permit.

This property has in fact very recently changed ownership and should be considered with a “new lens” as circumstances have changed.

I thank you in advance for your consideration of my comments on this public hearing.

1 COMMENT

  1. The Council of Greater Manhasset Civic Associations unanimously urges the BZA to deny renewal of the permit for Conditional Use as a Commercial Parking Lot at 17 Myrtle Street in Manhasset. See the full letter unanimously adopted by the Greater Council at it March 14 2018 meeting at https://www.manhassetcivic.org/news-events/
    Past Town BZA leadership has approved the renewal because BZA at the time, touting BZA has no authority to deny the permit – turning the entire BZA permit process into a superficial waste of time that no longer serves the Town and its communities. Town BZA’s obvious “turning a blind eye” and lack of scrutiny of the changes in area conditions over the years in the Plandome Rd business area has turned this vacant home and its yards into a 100% use as a paved parking lot with many code violations that Town does nothing about. Its time for change – invoke some common sense that improves our community.

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