The future of a warehouse proposed for Long Beach’s North Park neighborhood is in doubt after the developers withdrew their request for tax breaks.
The $13.8 million project would bring up to 50 trucks per day to 750-790 Park Place, according to an Environmental Assessment Form. The area has been a home to Long Beach’s Black community for decades.
City officials and community activists have expressed concern about the increased truck traffic and air pollution.
The developers, Silver Rock Development LLC and Namdar Realty Group, both based in Great Neck, recently recalled their application for assistance from the Nassau County Industrial Development Agency, according to the developers' attorney and IDA officials.
Silver Rock executive Sasha Mehdizadeh said on Monday that he was seeking authorization from Namdar before responding to Newsday questions. A Namdar executive didn't respond to a request for comment.
The developers' real estate attorney Daniel P. Deegan confirmed last week that tax aid was no longer being sought for the 75,000-square-foot warehouse. Deegan referred questions to Mehdizadeh.
In their IDA application last month, the developers stated “the project is infeasible without financial assistance” from the IDA. If tax breaks aren’t forthcoming, “the capital to be deployed [in Long Beach] could be directed to opportunities in New Jersey.”
The developers signed a contract to purchase the building in August for $11.4 million. The structure has been vacant since the pharmacy service business ChemRx announced in June 2020 that it was moving to Uniondale with tax breaks from the Town of Hempstead IDA. The company had 125 employees and had operated in Long Beach for about 50 years.
The developers said the location was ideal for trucks making daily deliveries to and from Kennedy Airport and destinations on Long Island. The developers said they hoped to open the warehouse in 2025 after two years of renovations, which would include moving the truck bays away from nearby townhouses.
At the Nassau IDA’s October meeting, chairman Richard Kessel said the agency would not negotiate a tax-incentive package without first receiving Long Beach’s endorsement of the project.
Long Beach City Manager Donna M. Gayden said this week, "The city has met with the proposed developer, who has promised to work with us to ensure compatible uses of the facility. We will be keeping a very close eye as they proceed to make sure they honor that commitment," she said.
Last month, Gayden told Newsday that the proposed warehouse with its 50 trucks per day "going past a playground, an early childhood center and through the streets of an environmental-justice residential community is simply not acceptable."
The developers' attorney has said that industrial buildings and warehouses are permitted on Park Place and that a self-storage facility and animal shelter are nearby.
Among the tax breaks that the developers had sought was 20 years of savings on property taxes, which currently total $341,725 per year, according to the IDA application.