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Long IslandNassau

Historic Bedell House faces demolition

Hiram K. Bedell House at its original site

Hiram K. Bedell House at its original site in West Hempstead circa 1982. The House was moved to Old Bethpage Village Restoration. Credit: handout/Newsday File

Thirty years after Nassau officials moved the historic Bedell House from West Hempstead to Old Bethpage Village Restoration to save it from demolition, the county now plans to do the job itself.

The county, which never restored the structure built by Hiram Bedell in 1833 or properly stabilized it to prevent deterioration, says it is beyond saving. Officials plan to tear it down and use the front door and other architectural details to build a replica.

"Demolition by neglect is unfortunately a common phenomenon around New York State," said Erin Tobin of the Preservation League of New York State. She added that the money required for tearing down the house could have paid for regular maintenance to save the original.

County spokeswoman Katie Grilli-Robles said "it was not in good condition when it arrived at Old Bethpage Village. The building cannot be saved as its structural integrity has been compromised."

Grilli-Robles said the replacement would be an exact copy of the original but construction will not start until $700,000 is found for the project.

The second floor of the replica will be used as a bridal suite and dressing rooms for couples getting married at the village's church, while the lower level will house a canteen, meeting room and restrooms.

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