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Trying To Save The Power Plant

Sea Cliff resident Karin Barnaby, who has been active for months in her mission to preserve the Glenwood Landing Power Plant, recently took her concerns straight to the Town of North Hempstead. She presented Supervisor Judi Bosworth with a petition calling on the town to take action to delay the demolition of the nearly 100-year-old plant at the North Hempstead Town Council meeting on Jan. 28.  During the public comment period, Barnaby spoke about the plant’s historical importance and the benefits re-purposing the structure would bring to both the community and property owners.

 

 “The Glenwood Landing plant is historically and architecturally unique on Long Island. Such plants were designed as civic monuments with the best architectural features of their day; preserving older buildings has become a standard component of urban renewal projects and is an aspect of green building,” says Barnaby.

 

Barnaby’s petition calls on National Grid to hold off demolition of “Power Station 2”—which is slated for next month—until “full consideration can be given to ways this landmark building might be most advantageously and profitably repurposed as a commercial, tax-paying enterprise as quickly as possible, and its prime waterfront revitalized and made accessible to the public for the benefit of the greater Glenwood Landing-North Shore-Hempstead Harbor community, now and for future generations.” 

 

To date, Barnaby has collected nearly 800 signatures, after launching her petition drive last summer on change.org. Last month, she delivered the statement to officials at National Grid during a meeting with residents of the North Shore community at the company’s Hicksville administrative offices. At that meeting, company representatives stated that demolition of the structure would begin in March, and be completed by December. After the land is remediated, National Grid intends to black top it with asphalt.

 

Glenwood Landing and North Shore residents are slated to shoulder a 19 percent tax increase in the coming years due to the loss of tax revenues in the amount of $14 million annually from the utility.

 

Barnaby has written extensively to local newspapers, including the Record Pilot, and posted updates on the Facebook page “Save the Glenwood Landing Power Plant” listing her reasons for saving the power plant. She maintains that National Grid will leave behind minimally remediated lands, unsightly substations, turbines, oil tanks and high voltage overhead cables and transmission towers that will render the site permanently unsuitable for residential use, as well as for most other commercial uses that are neighborhood-friendly and waterfront-accessible for area residents, and that in other parts of the country and world, power plants and industrial sites are being repurposed for both the public good and corporate profit.

 

“It’s really a no brainer,” she says. “There’s not a single reason why it can’t be repurposed.”

 

Barnaby, who used to sit on the North Shore Board of Education, says they knew of the plans to decommission the plant back in the 1980s, and she always thought it would be best to replace it with “another taxpayer.” Obviously, it is not suitable for a residential property, though she fully believes it would be ideal as a recreation center and has a vision of the building becoming  an indoor sports facility. She has grandkids in Stamford, CT, and when she first went into a rec center there that had been an old Clairol plant, the idea for the Glenwood Landing plant, she says, “hit me like lightning...It would be wildly popular, and pay the tax bill.”

 

  Her idea is to  repurpose the GWL plant’s waterfront building and site, as a revenue-generating, commercial Chelsea Piers-like sports, recreation and arts facility, which she says would result in a “win-win for everyone—for tax-payers, for LIPA/PSE&G, for National

Grid, for political leaders and, most importantly: for area team-sports families and enthusiasts, whose demand for playing fields and sports facilities has long exceeded supply.” 

 

She notes that, to succeed as a viable commercial undertaking, such a facility in Glenwood Landing would require optimal access. 

 

“A western access, linking Glenwood Road with Bar Beach, West Shore Road, 25A and beyond, would offer total access from all directions,” says Barnaby.  “A short bridge, attractively designed with multiple lanes for accommodating strollers, skaters, bicycle riders and anglers, as well as motorists, would need no more than a single support pier (if that) to span that narrow channel. It would not block the tidal exchange and hardly disturb the sea floor.”

 

She says the  direct link between Hempstead Harbor’s east and west shores and beyond, would also allow commuters to bypass the narrow back roads through Roslyn Harbor and Roslyn, while easing the traffic congestion in those communities.

 

  “Imagine a revitalized and accessible visitor-and-user-friendly waterfront with hiking, jogging, skating and bicycle paths, leading all the way from Sea Cliff to Port Washington—creating Hempstead Harbor’s very own Highline,” she says.

 

She says she’s sent letters of her vision to everyone from “Chuck Schumer on down” adding, “I’ve gotten no response.”

 

With demolition of the Power Station 2 set to begin in March, there is not much time left to get the political support needed. Still, Barnaby says, “I won’t give up until they start using the wrecking ball.”

News

In order to meet the necessary budget requirements, the Glen Cove School District will reduce school staff members, starting in the 2014-15 school year. One administrative staff member and nine instructional staff members will be let go, according to Superintendent

Maria Rianna’s report at the Monday night school board meeting. Staff reductions will also be made to teaching assistants, school monitors, substitute teachers and custodial and maintenance workers. The total savings for the district is $1,227,669.

 

As of March 31, revenues for the district total $79,281,428. The revenues include the tax levy ($64,780,719),  P.I.L.O.T.s ($1,908,060), tax on consumer utility bills ($1,250,000)n use of reserves ($1,250,000), State Aid ($8,751,799), all other revenues ($635,850) and appropriation of unassigned fund balance ($750,000).

 

The total appropriations for the district are $80,509,097 and revenues are $79,281,428 with a budget gap of $1,227,669.

 It has been five years since a particularly heavy rainfall closed all the beaches in Glen Cove including Crescent Beach. As per Nassau County Department of Health standards, beaches are ordered closed after heavy rainfall because of storm water runoff that adversely affects bacteria levels at local beaches. Typically, bacteria levels subside within a day or so, allowing for the beaches to be reopened. This was not the way it went with one popular beach after the June 2009 rain storm.

 

“Unfortunately, this was not the case with Crescent Beach,” said Glen Cove Parks & Recreation Director, Darcy Belyea, at last Wednesday night’s public forum at Glen Cove City Hall. “Elevated levels of microbiological contamination continued to be found in the bathing water months after the heavy rain and recent samples show they are still elevated today.”

 

Belyea was one of a number of panelists at the public forum, which included Glen Cove Mayor Reginald Spinello, City Attorney Charles McQuair, Director of the Hempstead Harbor Protection Committee Eric Swenson and representatives from the Nassau County Department of Health. 


Sports

 

Glen Cove High School players, from left, Tajah Garner, Dejon Taylor, Manny Sican, and Ralik Jackson, after the Long Island Colts u18’s team vs. St. Anthony’s at Robert Finley Middle School last week. Touchdown ‘tries’ by Garner, Taylor and Sican.


The third- and fourth-grade Knights took to the road last weekend as they faced off against Jericho early Sunday morning, April 6.  Jericho’s teamwork and hustle brought down the Knights by a final score of 5 – 0.  The early game may have been a factor as the boys started to play better and more like a team as the game went on.  Once again, goalie Tyler Shea played outstanding in goal and was relieved by Christian Maiorano, who did just as well in the second half.  Andrew Guster played solid defense in the loss.


Calendar

Eggstravaganza - April 16

Live Music - April 16

Community Easter Egg Hunt - April 19


Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com