Plans to subdivide a commercial lot in Roslyn Heights are on hold after residents near the property objected, saying potentially more neighbors cannot fit on their already crammed, dead-end street.
Ilan Yerushalmi of Roslyn Heights is the president of Napoleon Prime Properties LLC, the developer that owns a 29,211-square-foot lot at 25 Lambert St. Napoleon Prime has submitted an application to North Hempstead Town to have part of that property rezoned to residential. The Napoleon Prime property stretches across 25 Lambert St. and 154 Mineola Ave. There is a house at the Lambert Street address that has been vacant for more than two years, and the Mineola address formerly housed School of Rock Roslyn.
If approved, Yerushalmi wants to put two new single-family homes on the property as well as a one-story commercial building.
“The proposed change of zone from business to residential creates more conformity in the area, as the immediate surrounding area is all residential,” said Jessica Leis, a Uniondale attorney representing Napoleon Prime.
The Nassau County Planning Commission approved Napoleon Prime’s plan in March, and North Hempstead's zoning board did likewise in April 2018, Leis told the town council on April 30. The council must approve the rezoning in order to move the plan forward, Leis said.
Council members heard pushback from residents Tuesday just moments before the council was preparing to vote.
"The neighborhood itself is getting very stuffy," said resident Angela Homapour. "It used to be three or four cars on the block, now there's tons of cars. Eight months ago, I lost my young dog, which one of the cars that came in to turn [on the street] killed."
Homapour, a 22-year Roslyn Heights resident, said approving Napoleon Prime's plan would generate more new neighbors than the street can handle.
“I moved out of Queens for a quiet neighborhood and, slowly, my neighborhood feels like I live in the city,” Homapour said. “It’s losing its essence of being a suburb.”
Kenneth Priest, also of Roslyn Heights, said he and his neighbors share Homapour’s objections.
“We are concerned about the ratio of the house lot and the congestion that the three, really the two, additional houses are going to bring,” Priest said. “It’s a dead-end street, and we don’t have good access in and out.”
After hearing residents, council members decided to postpone their vote until their next meeting, on June 18.
Supervisor Judi Bosworth asked Leis to meet with residents “and see if there are any ways their concerns could be addressed.” Councilman Peter Zuckerman, whose district includes Roslyn Heights, told Leis that an extra month will give Napoleon Prime time to consider residents' concerns.
“Maybe," Zuckerman said, "there’s a way for the community and your client to reach some accord.”