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Mineola to replace storm-damaged welcoming sign

Workers scale the "Welcome to Mineola" sign atop

Workers scale the "Welcome to Mineola" sign atop the Station Plaza Diner at the Long Island Railroad Station Friday, Aug. 8, 2014. Credit: Danielle Finkelstein

The "Welcome to Mineola" sign atop a diner at the village's Long Island Rail Road station is expected to be replaced by the end of this month, nearly two years after superstorm Sandy wrecked the original.

Winthrop-University Hospital leases the space on the roof of the Station Plaza Diner to advertise the medical center, and officials have wanted to replace the sign, which had its clock hands blown off during the October 2012 storm.

The Mineola zoning board approved plans for the new sign at its July 24 meeting. Going Sign & Servicing Co. Inc. of Plainview, which made the original sign in 1974 when the company was in Mineola, has been hired to build the new model.

"Winthrop-University Hospital understands and values the importance of participating in the zoning board process, especially seeing as it relates to the beautification of a sign that welcomes all into our community," hospital officials said in a statement.

"Now that we have secured the approvals, it is our hope that the Going sign company can begin the restoration process as soon as it is feasible."

Justin Burke of Winthrop's External Affairs Department told the zoning board the company is "looking to keep it as 'Welcome to Mineola,' as a gateway into the village. We'll replace it; update it with a brand new clock and American flag."

Power lines have been realigned to accommodate the new design, which will include environmentally friendly LED lighting.

Ed Keating, vice president of marketing and public relations for the hospital, said last week that it will "look like the old sign, but there are going to be a few changes."

He declined to reveal what those changes would be but said Winthrop will be mentioned on the sign in some way.

"It will be up soon," Keating said of the new sign. "We're still aiming at the middle of the month" for it to be completed.

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