After getting questions from residents and officials, Millbrook Court representatives said at a Great Neck Board of Trustees meeting on May 1 that they could reopen a parking lot on the southern side of the property in a couple days.
But two weeks later, two dozen parking spots remain blocked and a sign affixed to a building declares the parking lot is closed, save for trash and recycling. Affected residents have been redirected to the northern parking lot.
For Louis Frisina, a Millbrook Court resident with a reconstructed knee, hip, and pelvis living near the closed parking lot, this is both unfair and creating “a little hike to get to our cars.”
“It is now two weeks past the meeting and the superintendent is telling everyone, per the owner, that we are not getting our parking lot back even though they are not even close to any approvals,” Frisina said.
Property manager Terrence Attus could not be reached for comment on Tuesday.
At a Great Neck village board meeting on Tuesday night, Building Superintendent Robert Barbach said he consulted with Peter Bee, the village attorney, and they “expressed the potential to take action against Millbrook if they do not fulfill their commitment to this board.”
“When we learned that the parking lot had not been reopened, we gently nudged,” Barbach said. “Failing to achieve the desired result, we are now showing that we can do more than nudge if we do not get the response [we want].”
When asked after the meeting what actions are being considered, Bee said, “We are exploring a range of options.”
Mark Smith, a representative with Epoch 5 Public Relations, which is handling public relations for North Shore Millbrook, said the group is working with the village to create “long-term solutions.”
“North Shore Millbrook is actively discussing with the village a variety of long-term solutions that will accommodate those inconvenienced by the parking lot consolidation throughout the entire renovation process,” Smith said.
Developers from North Shore Millbrook LLC, which purchased Millbrook Apartments in 2015 according to a notice sent to residents, have proposed erecting three new buildings with 101 apartment units, while 34 units would be demolished under the proposal.
This would translate to a net gain of 67 apartment units from the current 119, meaning 186 would be on the property.
Paul Bloom, an attorney representing the developers, previously said it “made more sense to consolidate the parking in one area” in anticipation of the demolition of the south building, which would be the first to go down, since tenants in the affected 34 units have largely been relocated.
He also said it “reduces the maintenance that needs to be conducted in that area.”
Mayor Pedram Bral and other residents had asked why the owners closed the parking lot when it would be at least six weeks before a demolition permit could be secured.
Representatives for the developers at the meeting initially said they would “consider” reopening the parking lot before saying “there would have to be a couple of days” before residents could park their cars in the southern parking lot again.
“Your concerns were heard, the questions and concerns was asked, and they agreed to open the parking lot, so that is done,” Bral said. “And hopefully whenever they’re ready to go ahead and build they’re going to rope it off again – but until then, you guys can have your parking.”
The next hearing regarding the Millbrook Court proposal will be June 5 at 7:30 p.m. at Great Neck Village Hall, 61 Baker Hill Road.