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Five-story Inwood building hearing adjourned

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A Town of Hempstead Board of Appeals hearing for a proposed five-story building at the intersection of Bayview Avenue and Russell Place in Inwood was adjourned to April 29. 

Inwood resident Isaiah Moultrie is the main applicant. The proposal includes: exceeding the allowable building height to build what they are calling a “multi-family” building on what is now a half dozen vacant lots.

The town’s code allows buildings single-family residences to be no higher than three stories or 45 feet high, except a church. Single-family residences can be no more than 2.5 stories and a maximum height of 30 feet.

Moultrie previously told the Inwood Civic Association on Feb. 6 that a majority of the units would be either one-bedroom or studio apartments with a few two-bedroom units, and the initial target renters would be military veterans and first responders.

Since the proposal location lies within the Lawrence School District, attorney Al D’Agostino, who is representing the school district, asked for the adjournment at the Feb. 12 hearing. 

“The district first became aware of the proposal about a week ago when a school board member drove by the location,” D’Agostino said. “We’re asking for an adjournment until the middle of April to give us time to bring in experts to review the proposal. Right now we oppose the proposal.” Since the Board of Appeals only meets twice in April, the board members opted for the meeting later in the month.

Christian Browne is representing Moultrie and noted he was reluctant to agree to the time extension. “I think April is too much time, but I respect their request for an adjournment,” Browne said. “During this time, I think there will be some questions we will be able to answer that will be on the mind of school board members.”

The Board of Appeals holds official public hearings and renders formal written decisions on cases brought by people whose permit applications have been denied by the Department of Buildings, or by people who oppose building permit approvals. 

Ivan Stotesketle has lived in Inwood for 69 years and said people should get behind this proposal. “I don’t know why the school district wouldn’t be in favor of this,” she said. “I think the Inwood people need to support each other and this is something that would improve our community.”

Browne noted that he and Moultrie have already engaged the community on the proposal. “I haven’t spoken to the school district yet but were willing to speak with them,” Browne said. “I think there’s already been a fair amount of community outreach by us, but we’re more than happy to engage with more people if necessary.”

The April 29 meeting will be at 2 p.m. To submit comments to the Board of Appeals, go to https://bit.ly/2yozAj and use the comment form. Comments can also be sent in writing to: David P. Weiss, Chairman of the Board of Appeals, 1 Washington Street, Hempstead, N.Y. 11550.

Have an opinion about the proposed development? Send your letter to the editor to jbessen@liherald.com.