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Proposed Mineola apartment complex debated

This is an artist's version of the original

This is an artist's version of the original plan for Village Green apartment complex in Mineola. It has since been reduced by one-story creating a 266-apartment version near the Long Island Rail Road station in Mineola. Credit: Stephen B. Jacobs Group of Manhattan

March 25 is the deadline for written public comments to be filed about a proposed eight-story apartment complex near the Long Island Rail Road Station in Mineola.

A public hearing on the plan for the Mineola Village Green project was closed Wednesday night following four sessions of comments and presentations by representatives for the developer, New Hyde Park-based Lalezarian Properties LLC.

The complex is proposed for a 1.5 acre parcel between Mineola Boulevard and Main, Second and Front streets.

Most of those who spoke at the often-tense meetings objected to the proposal. Concerns ranged from the number of children that could be added to the school system if the 266-unit complex is built to the height of the building. Many said the structure would be too tall for the area, though a floor has been removed from the original plan. The elimination of a ninth floor also cut the number of apartments from the 296 that had been proposed.

Proponents of the plan pointed to the tax revenue the property could generate and the contribution the commuter-targeted complex could make to the revitalization of downtown.

As he closed the public hearing for oral comments at the village board of trustees meeting, Mayor Scott Straus said the governing body faced a tough road in making a decision.

In response to suggestions from the public that a referendum on the matter be held, Strauss said the project could not be decided by voters because land use decisions do not qualify for referendums.

"We heard a tremendous amount of testimony," Strauss said. "This is a tough spot we're in . . . and it's OK. We'll figure out something to do."

If approved, construction could begin by fall.

The project would be the second Lalezarian project in Mineola. The other, now underway, is a rental complex at 250 Old Country Rd.

Wednesday night's session was a continuation of a public hearing on the project that opened on Feb. 11.

Anyone wishing to make comments by mail should send them to the village clerk's office, 155 Washington Ave., Mineola, NY 11501.

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