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Hicksville LIRR parking garage to close Sept. 12 for repairs, officials say

The Hicksville LIRR parking garage, shown on April

The Hicksville LIRR parking garage, shown on April 11, will reopen before the end of the year, officials said. Credit: Howard Schnapp

The Hicksville parking garage will close for repairs beginning Sept. 12, Oyster Bay officials announced Tuesday.

The town will provide additional temporary parking at the former Hicksville Sears store and run shuttle buses during the morning and afternoon rush while the garage is closed "due to the need for significant structural repairs," Town Supervisor Joseph Saladino said during Tuesday's town board meeting.

The board approved an agreement with the old Sears property owner, Seritage Growth Properties, to use the parking spaces without charge through Dec. 31. Approximately 1,200 parking spaces will be available on weekdays from 5 a.m. to 9 p.m., according to correspondence between the town and the property owner posted on the town's website. 

The town plans to stripe the lot by the end of August to create the parking stalls, Deputy Highway Commissioner John Bishop said after Tuesday's board meeting. 

Saladino said the garage would reopen before the end of the year, but did not offer a more precise timeline.

Newsday reported earlier this year that Seritage submitted plans to Oyster Bay for a proposed mixed-use development on the site that would include 596 apartments, 240,000 square feet of retail space and 5 acres of green space. Seritage is a publicly traded Real Estate Investment Trust based in Manhattan.

Oyster Bay parking permits will be required to use the Sears lot. Shuttles to and from the LIRR station, about a half-mile away, will run from 5 to 9 a.m. and 4 to 8 p.m., Saladino said. 

The garage has been plagued with problems -- including cracked ceilings, concrete falling onto cars and leaks --  since shortly after it opened in 2011.

The planned work is expected to take 90 days, according to town documents. The work includes replacing concrete decking and carbon fiber reinforcement, repairing cracks, replacing lights and the security system as well as mechanical and electrical repairs, and replacing carbon monoxide and fire detection systems, Saladino said.

A previous plan to close the 1,441-space garage from early July to early October was abandoned after the town board rejected contractors’ repair bids as too high. The board on July 24 approved a $13.9 million bid for the repair work — $1.6 million below the previous low bid.

The garage cost about $65 million to build, including the cost of demolishing an older garage at the site. Last year the town installed metal posts called screw jacks to help support the ceilings on two lower levels.

Town officials last year sued Freeport-based Peter Scalamandre & Sons Inc. and Mineola-based Sidney B. Bowne & Son LLP for their work on the garage. At the time, the companies defended their work. The company Sidney B. Bowne has sold its assets since the lawsuit was filed and town officials have said they are seeking damages from the company's insurer.

— With David Olson

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