A public hearing scheduled for Monday where a developer was to present ideas to Mayor Alan Beach and the Lynbrook board of trustees and listen to feedback from community members about a proposed apartment complex and parking garage for downtown Lynbrook has been postponed. No new date has been scheduled.
Beach said the board had received and reveiwed an application from the Farmingdale-based Terwilliger & Bartone Properties and it was "not in keeping with the character of downtown Lynbrook."
"The decision by the board and I to cancel the Nov. 19 hearing was based upon an extended review of the documents submitted and is in keeping with our responsibility to our residents as elected members of the board," Beach said in a statement. "Our decision was not based upon incomplete information or innaccurate statements that may have been put forth throughout our community anonymously." Beach was referring to flyers that were anonymously mailed out to the community denouncing the project.
Devleloper Anthony Bartone was set to appear at Village Hall at 8 p.m. Monday, but Beach said the hearing has been postponed. Bartone did not immediately return calls or emails requesting comment.
Bartone previously met with residents to address questions and concerns about the project at an open house at the Elks Lodge on Oct. 22.
This is the latest in several postponements for the public hearing. The last time it was postponed was at the request of the board, which asked Bartone to present traffic studies and other paperwork before moving forward.
The $75 million, 200-unit apartment complex, dubbed the Cornerstone at Lynbrook, would be built on the southwest corner of Earle Avenue and St. James Place, in the village’s downtown cultural arts district. In exchange for the board’s approval to build, Bartone said he would fund and construct a $10 million, 400-space parking garage at Broadway and Langdon Place.
The project has received mixed reviews from residents and business owners. Many residents have expressed concerns that the complex would exacerbate traffic issues in the village and could cause an increase in students enrolled in the school district, but Bartone said he was confident there would not be any issues. Several business owners lauded the proposal and said it would add more foot traffic to the downtown, more support for businesses and add what was once a vacant lot to the tax rolls.
Last month, Beach acknowledged that the project has received mixed reviews, but asked for residents to keep an open mind. “Let him present it,” he said of Bartone, “and let everybody have a good understanding about what actually is happening.”
The parking garage would be built first, on what is now Parking Field 3, a lot used mostly by Long Island Rail Road commuters. The apartments would be built on a two-acre parcel of land now occupied by Parking Field 8, used by employees of village businesses, and at 14 St. James Place, which is now a law office. According to Bartone, the parking garage would take six to eight months to complete, while construction of the apartments would take 18 months.
During the open house, Bartone expressed frustration about a petition that was circulated around the village denouncing the project, which he said spread false rumors about the proposal.
“What’s most disappointing about the petition, and I’m not sure that people realize, is it’s riddled with misinformation — factually inaccurate information,” Bartone said. “And that’s what’s most disappointing. If people were looking to put a petition out there, that’s their right. We would never stifle that, but it really should be based in fact.”
To learn more about the project before the public hearing, visit cornerstonelynbrook.com.