NHP board hears parking complaints

Andrew Benjamin

Herkimer Street residents in New Hyde Park say they can no longer tolerate congestion caused by workers from a nearby light industrial manufacturing facility whose cars they say block their driveways daily

So in response, Herkimer Street resident Joseph Bonura presented the village board with a petition requesting new parking restrictions on the street at Tuesday night’s village board meeting.

The petition, which was signed by 15 of the 17 homeowners on the street,  requested that current parking restrictions of 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. be changed to 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. The residents went on to modify the request during to meeting to restrict parking from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

“It’s the same the people that park there and it’s getting annoying,” Bonura said.

“It’s impossible to get in and out of our own driveways,” added Dan Weissfeld. “And they put their cars to the tip of the driveway. It’s amazing there hasn’t been any accidents.”

The residents cited the source of the congestion as a light industrial manufacturing facility that formerly housed a jewelry store at 1300 Plaza Ave. 

Residents said the workers should pay for parking at meters instead of clogging the street. 

“I’ve had people directly park in front of my driveway,” said Chris Podbielski, a resident who has lived in the area since 1969. “I couldn’t get into or out of my driveway. People do it all the time.”

Village board members sympathized with the residents, but said they wanted to study the problem before taking action.

“We’re not against changing the regulations. We’re just trying to figure out the right regulation so it doesn’t impact the residents,” New Hyde Park Deputy Mayor Robert Lofaro said.

New Hyde Park Mayor Daniel Petruccio said he wants to see the problem resolved as effectively as possible.

“We want to try to solve this problem as best we can,” New Hyde Park Mayor Daniel Petruccio said. “It’s not going to be tomorrow morning. But we’ll want to get it done in a timely fashion.”

He said the village board would try to make a decision on whether or not to amend the existing parking restrictions at the next board meeting.

In other developments:

• Lofaro said the village currently estimates the village sustained $300,000 in damage from Hurricane Sandy. The village, he said, is currently in talks with FEMA to recoup the money. 

“We have a contact person,” Petruccio said. “They’re fairly cooperative in wanting to help us. We feel good that something positive is going to happen.”

Lofaro said work on the damage caused by the hurricane is nearly finished.

“We are soon to be completing the reconstruction phase of the damage done after the hurricane. Most of the cement work has been done where we replaced sidewalks, curbs and refilling the top soil.  Most of that repair work has been completed [Monday] or [Tuesday]. We still have some areas that need attention but the majority of the work has been done.”

• Trustee Barbieri reported that the village board hopes to have bids by its next meeting on the last phase of its Operation Main Street upgrade project on Jericho Turnpike,. Included in the work would be brick paving, benches and some planted medians. Village officials expect the work to be done by the spring of next year.

“We’re all but at the finish the line,” Barbieri said.

• A fundraiser for the nonprofit Operation Wounded Warrior, an organization of county fire departments that aids injured U.S. Military service people, is scheduled for Park Place Restaurant on Covert Avenue in Floral Park on Saturday, Dec. 15 at 1 p.m.

• Village Trustee Donald Barbieri said applications are being accepted for the village’s talent contest, Spotlight New Hyde Park. The competition is set for Jan. 10 and 11 at 7 p.m. for ages 13 to 21 and Jan. 13 at 2 p.m. for ages up to 12. Applications are available at, http://vnhp.org/spotlight.htm.

• A production of the children’s show “Toy Camp” will be performed at Village Hall’s William Gill Theater on Dec. 14 and 15 at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. Tickets are being sold at village hall for $2.

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Andrew Benjamin

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