Great Neck Plaza to move forward with transportation project

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Great Neck Plaza to move forward with transportation project

The Great Neck Plaza Board of Trustees on Wednesday approved an agreement with the Great Neck Park District that would allow the village to move forward with a project to improve pedestrian and vehicle safety.
The village introduced plans in February for the project, which is intended to improve pedestrian and bicyclist safety on Shoreward Drive and Welwyn Road.
Village Attorney Richard Gabriele said that because the project is being funded with $838,000 in federal aid allotted to the village by Gov. Andrew Cuomo in January 2014 the village must own all the property that will be affected.
“The fences and the sidewalks don’t exactly correspond with the property line, and so the two parties involved entered into a property line agreement,” Gabriele said.
The resolution to sign an intermunicipal agreement with the  park district, he said, will help accomplish the project.
Mayor Jean Celender said that when the survey of the property was conducted it included a small section of park district property.
“So we needed to have it adjusted so that it fits the edge of the park district’s properties and our sidewalks,” Celender said.
Albert Dawson, of the consulting firm Lockwood, Kessler & Bartlett, who the village hired for the project, has said the plan was to have a final design completed this month  and to begin construction in April.
Dawson said the estimated  completion date is November 2017.
One of the improvements to the area, which generates high pedestrian and vehicle traffic because of the surrounding stores like kosher supermarket Shop Delight and a U.S. Post Office, he said, was to create a mid-block raised crosswalk that would offer pedestrians a safer way of crossing the street from a commuter lot and slow down cars driving through.
As well as aiming to improve traffic concerns, the project would see the creation of what Dawson called a “Post Office Plaza.”
He said in designing the new roads, LKB was able to create an additional 30 feet of landscape area, which it would use to create a beautified area with seating for residents to enjoy while they’re out walking.
Also at the meeting, an application for a proposed 61-unit apartment complex by 14 Park Place LLC at 15 Bond St. was adjourned until the Nov. 16 board meeting.
Celender said the attorney for developer Effie Namdar of 14 Park Place LLC, Paul Bloom, was away on vacation.
 The board delayed amending a local law regarding affordable housing units in two of its zoning districts until the Dec. 7 meeting because preliminary sketches were not ready to be presented to the board.
Celender said she and Michael Sweeney, the village’s commissioner of public services, met a month ago with a regional planning association hired  to provide them with “pertinent information” for the imminent site review.
“They were going to go back out in the field and do some review [to] recommend how we modify those zones,” Celender said. “They aren’t ready yet.”
Also at the meeting, village Treasurer Patricia O’Byrne said that building permits have helped raise the village’s tentative tax roll by $500,000 for the upcoming fiscal year.
The total taxable assessed valuation, she said as of Nov. 1 is $37,998,022, which will be used as a basis for taxes.
The board approved the tentative tax assessment roll as presented by O’Byrne.

By Neglah Sharma

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