Written by Cory Twibell Friday, 01 March 2013 00:00
In the midst of Westbury’s downtown revitalization, which includes a newly redeveloped performing arts theater, focus is shifting to a vital question – is it enough keep young people here?
Post Avenue in Westbury has transformed into a desirable downtown for young adults, though several aspects associated with living in Nassau County have many young adults heading west to live and work.
“You have to provide reasonably priced housing but also have to have other amenities that are going to be attractive to people who are younger. My kid’s friends want to live in the city or near the city because there’s a lot going on with entertainment and job choices. As a community you have to try to develop those things. It’s not enough to say you have affordable apartment houses in Westbury if there’s nothing around or no jobs,” said Westbury Village Mayor Peter Cavallaro, who noted that the new theater, dubbed The Space at Westbury, may be six to eight weeks away from opening.
“Long Island has been suffering from this ‘youth drain’ for decades and it’s sort of at a breaking point where if something is not done relatively soon to reverse that, you may lose people for a long period of time,” said Cavallaro.
Similarly, Nassau County Executive hopeful Tom Suozzi wondered once his daughter went away to college if she’d ever come back.
“Instead of moving to some other part of the country, I want my daughter to come back to live here. She wants to be somewhere there’s a job, where there’s an apartment and where she can hang out with her friends,” said Suozzi, who spoke with Anton News editors last month.
Suozzi, though he disagreed with Charles Wang’s Lighthouse Project, said the idea at least would have “changed people’s mindset” on the county’s central Hub area. He cited White Plains and New Rochelle as formerly decrepit regions that are now vibrant downtowns – mainly because suburban planning revolves around mass transit in those areas.
“We need cool downtowns like Garden City, Rockville Centre and Great Neck. People live there in ‘walkable’ communities with shops, restaurants and a train station. Let’s preserve open space, but let’s develop downtowns,” said Suozzi.
Though Money magazine has named Westbury one of the most desirable places to live for young adults, the award specifically reads, “best places for the rich and single.”
“That’s the whole idea of smart growth. Make these communities with a lot of different features attractive to not just young people. It’s a work in progress, but I think Westbury is further ahead of the curve than a lot of other communities are, not that we’re done,” said Cavallaro.
Friday, 24 May 2013 00:00
Doug Ingram was recently named the new chief of the Westbury Fire Department.
Ingram grew up in Old Westbury and graduated from Westbury High School in 1974. After graduating, he joined the Navy where he spent two years stationed in Italy. When he was honorably discharged in 1979, he joined the Westbury fire department and has been involved there ever since.
Thursday, 23 May 2013 00:00
In what is hoped to be a step forward for the Westbury School District’s ongoing search for a superintendent, the board of education voted to terminate its contract with search firm Hazard, Young, Attea. However, questions still remain. Will the board continue the search with another firm? Will the board conduct the search themselves? Will it consider current Interim Superintendent Mary Lagnado for the position? And of course, how long will the process take before a permanent superintendent is named?
Thursday, 23 May 2013 00:00
Avenging the previous day’s loss and moving themselves one step closer to a possible county title, the Carle Place Frogs Softball team beat out the Locust Valley Falcons Wednesday, May 15 in a game two rematch for the Nassau County Class B Semi-Final, 12-3.
Friday, 17 May 2013 00:00
Westbury Okinawan Karate recently celebrated its 10-year anniversary of coming to the Westbury Recreation Center. Since then, the dojo has trained 250 students, ages six and up, in the art of karate with the style of traditional Okinawan ShorinRyu Shidokan.
Founded by sensei John Power, the classes seek to instill the confidence and strength needed to obtain success in everyday life.
“A lot of kids are lacking confidence,” said Power. “We let them practice leadership in the class and this contributes to their confidence.