The historic Garden City home bought by an Islanders defenseman is set to be demolished next week after plans to relocate it were halted by Nassau County.
County officials said they were facing a veritable logistical spider’s web as they tried to maneuver the 133-year-old home from downtown Garden City less than three miles to Mitchel Field, where county housing officials had hoped to use it for veterans housing.
Islanders defenseman Johnny Boychuk and his wife Sheena purchased the home on Sixth Street in November for $1 million and plan to build a larger, modern Victorian on the property.
Boychuk offered to give away the home for free to anyone able to relocate it to another property, but he now plans to demolish it since a suitor has not been found./“They’re looking to demolish it now with no other options in sight,” the Boychuks’ architect, T.J. Costello said. “They didn’t want people to think they didn’t try and they wanted everyone to come out happy with the outcome. It’s disappointing it couldn’t come together. They tried, but it’s difficult to save it at this time.”
Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano and housing officials approached Boychuck last month about relocating the 1883 A.T. Stewart house, by navigating an elaborate route in the middle of the night.
Several vendors, including Bohemia–based Ironmen House Lifting, Valley Stream-based South Shore Ready Mix and Habitat for Humanity of Nassau County had offered to move and renovate the home for free, Nassau County housing official Michael Raab said.
The county was prepared to spend $100,000 in labor to move the 35-foot high house down Sixth Street to Hempstead Turnpike and through the Hofstra parking lot and around pedestrian bridges to military housing property at Mitchel Field.
Those plans were for naught when county workers realized the route was encumbered by a series of wires and cables from PSEG, Verizon and Cablevision, Raab said. Moving the house would require disconnecting major transmission lines that serve as power sources to the area and are heavily utilized in the summer.
“It was a wonderful idea and some amazing people came to the table with full intentions of making this happen, but unfortunately, it became a logistical barrier,” Raab said. “In the end, nobody can move that house. There’s nowhere to take it to. You can’t say we didn’t try.”
Costello said the five-bedroom home is “functionally obsolete” with dated electrical wiring and brick walls and foundation. He said the largest room in the house is 13 feet wide. He said the Boychuks are open to salvaging any parts of the home for historical collectors.
The home was listed on the National Register of Historical Places. Garden City officials turned down offers to acquire the house or relocate it as part of the village library.