The historic Garden City home owned by a New York Islanders defenseman could be saved by a Nassau County proposal to move and donate the home as veterans housing.
County officials are considering several proposals that could move Johnny Boychuk’s home from Sixth Street in Garden City to county-owned property in Mitchel Field, said county spokesman Brian Nevin.
Boychuk and his wife, Sheena, purchased the 1883 house in November for $1 million. Boychuk offered to donate it, but said last week it would be demolished if a new location couldn’t be found this week. Boychuk has said he plans to build a modern Victorian house on the property near Garden City’s downtown.
County officials have been negotiating to move the house and have it renovated by Habitat for Humanity, he said.
“Veteran housing is a priority for Nassau County and this presents an opportunity to expand on our success,” said County Executive Edward Mangano.
The Boychuk’s architect, T.J. Costello, of Manhasset, said Thursday that the family may be willing to extend their deadline if a proposal is made.
“The Boychuks are eager for everyone to come out a winner,” Costello said.
Several contractors have said they could move the house for free and pour a new concrete foundation at the Mitchel Field property. County representatives are negotiating plans for electrical hookups and are looking for volunteer skilled workers and funding for Habitat for Humanity, officials said.
“We hope this could be an opportunity to make a tough situation be great situation,” said Nassau County Habitat For Humanity Executive Director Michael Pfeiffer.
The Nassau County Legislature would have to approve the move. Because of the July Fourth holiday, the earliest the legislature could vote is July 11.
Officials are waiting to get written proposals, financing and gifting of any services, Nevin said.
Moving the house would be a massive undertaking, including transporting it in the middle of night to close streets and face minimal traffic, officials said.
The original A.T. Stewart Home is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, but its designation does not save it from potentially being demolished. The Garden City Historical Society has been working to relocate the home. Its request to acquire the home was turned down last week by the Garden City Village Board and Library Board.
“The only choice we had was demolition or finding someone else to use the house,” Garden City Historical Society trustee Terence Kenny said. “Hands down, it’s good to see the house be used by someone in need.”