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Former iconic Chinese restaurant in Huntington demolished

The long-shuttered Sun Ming Chinese restaurant on Jericho

The long-shuttered Sun Ming Chinese restaurant on Jericho Turnpike in Huntington, built around 1930 and seen here in a Google Street View photo from September 2013, has been demolished. Credit: Google Maps

The former Sun Ming Chinese restaurant building on West Jericho Turnpike in Huntington has been demolished after the town placed the site on its blight list.

Edward Dickman, the Great Neck-based architect for a proposed commercial development at the site, said the building was wrecked last week.

Town tax records say the property at 1000 West Jericho Tpke., on Round Swamp Road, is owned by One Thousand C LLC based in Great Neck.

The owner demolished the structure in an agreement with the town, which in March added the property to its blight list because it met or exceeded 100 points in a blight-measuring system set in town code.

Dickman said plans will move ahead to build an 8,000-square-foot women's retail clothing store on the site. He said a variance from the zoning board of appeals for an extension for the commercial parking depth will be needed.

Alissa Sue Taff, president of the Civic Association of Sweet Hollow, which borders the site, said she is glad the "disgusting" building is gone, but she has concerns about traffic.

She suggested that curb cuts be made on West Jericho Turnpike rather than Round Swamp Road, "which is one lane in each direction, and it's already a huge problem area."

The building was built around 1930 and served as a restaurant offering several types of cuisine over the years, including American, Italian, and French, according to Huntington Town Historian Robert Hughes.

Hughes said Chinese-American architect Poy Gum Lee, who did extensive work in Shanghai and New York City's Chinatown, is believed to have been the architect behind the building's pagoda details added in 1955, when the menu converted to Chinese. It remained a Chinese restaurant until it closed several years ago.

In December, the town zoning board of appeals denied a request to demolish the restaurant and a vacant two-family house on the site and use the property to build a mixed-use building with six apartments above a retail store.

The dilapidated former restaurant and home were to be replaced with a two-floor, 15,600-square-foot building.

The seven-member zoning board unanimously denied the request by Dickman because he failed to "sustain the required burden of proof" for the special-use permit and requested variances.

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