East Shore Park could be completed before year’s end

Janelle Clausen
Kings Point Mayor Michael Kalnick listens to a presentation at a Thursday night board meeting. (Photo by Janelle Clausen)
Kings Point Mayor Michael Kalnick listens to a presentation at a Thursday night board meeting. (Photo by Janelle Clausen)

The Village of Kings Point’s proposed park for East Shore Road could be completed before the end of the year, project managers told trustees at a Thursday night board meeting, with bid documents slated to go out this month.

Chic Voorhis, a representative from the environmental planning firm Nelson, Pope & Voorhis, said they are finalizing a bid package to secure landscapers who would work to remove and manage invasive plants to make East Shore Park possible.

“We’ve been working with the village attorney to come up with the necessary specifications,” Voorhis said. “The plans are in fact complete – we are just working out some of the language for the bid documents and we expect to get that out within the next week or two.”

Voorhis said the removal and control of invasive plant species would likel take place in March, April and possibly part of May. New plantings could potentially overlap with that period and continue through June, he said, with further support and “tune-ups” following in the months safter.

“I would expect this to all be wrapped up by Nov. 30 this year,” Voorhis said, adding that it would be wise to monitor for returning invasive species afterward.

What might not be wrapped up by year’s end are questions over compensation to former property owners whose property was acquired for the creation of a six-acre passive park.

Kings Point trustees had adopted a resolution almost two years ago authorizing the village to acquire waterfront land on Manhasset Bay via eminent domain in hopes of beautifying the area and improving the view.

Stephen Limmer, the village attorney, said there are still disputes from 12 of the 20 original property owners over how much the property is worth and thus how much they should be compensated – but that there will still be a park regardless.

“The village owns the property. That’s not an issue,” Limmer said on Friday. “The only issue is what the fair market value was.”

Limmer said the village hired Harvey Besunder as outside counsel on the matter late last year and that both sides will meet to give each other their appraisals on April 15.

As for how long it can take or how much it could cost the village, Limmer said it’s unclear.

“There’s so many ways this could go,” Limmer said. “It’s pure speculation as to what the total fees are going to be and what the judges are going to do.”

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