The property at 4347 Broadway in Lynbrook was a former feather factory, opera house and knitting factory and will soon have 201 transit-oriented apartments. The estimated $95 million project is expected to last two years. For many, this was long overdue.
Seeing the start of demolition, Harry Levitt, former president of the Lynbrook Chamber of Commerce, said it was “a great day in the village to finally get rid of the visual pollution that we have worked very hard and in close collaboration with the administrators of the village for almost 30 years ago.”
A state review board approved a gap March 10 for the development to be built by Garden City-based Breslin Realty. Last November, the Town of Hempstead’s Industrial Development Agency approved a 30-year payment-in-lieu-tax plan, known as a PILOT. Much of the funding for the project, $22.7 million, comes from San Francisco-based investment firm PCCP.
Breslin Realty stepped in five years ago to convert the structure into a high-density residential complex. Breslin Development Director David Orwasher told the Herald in June, “We are pleased and proud to be helping to revitalize the walkable town center in the Village of Lynbrook”, and that “it is a noble project which will add value across the board for Lynbrook residents.
Due to its proximity to the Long Island Rail Road station, the 278,014 square foot development is aimed at young professionals commuting to Manhattan. “I think this should bring a lot of new blood to Lynbrook – a lot of new people,” said Lynbrook Chamber of Commerce President Cory Hirsch.
“I hope it continues to attract new business, and I think it’s a good thing for Lynbrook to have these apartments which will be right next to the train – it’s very convenient for people (and) j hope (will) entice people to move to Lynbrook.
Village officials approved the project last June. The apartment complex will rise seven stories high and will have 55 studios, 111 one-bedroom apartments and 35 two-bedroom apartments.
It will also provide 205 spaces in its parking garage along with a retail cafe, club room, concierge and rooftop terrace and other amenities. Ten percent of the units will be designated for affordable housing – those below 130 percent of the area’s median income.
“I grew up in Lynbrook and have walked past this building for the past 20+ years.” Hirsch said. “It’s really nice that from an eyesore that was just a rundown building, we got this beautiful new apartment complex.”
The new construction where the “horror” once stood will function as a possible stimulus for Lynbrook’s economy. Hirsch thinks the Lynbrook community is attractive to a new demographic.
“I think when you have all these young professionals looking to spend money, they’re going to go to restaurants. They are going to walk in the city center; they’ll walk to the cinema from there,” Hirsch said. “I think that should only help, and it should only help attract new business and help the businesses that we have (to) continue to thrive.”
Holiday Inn Express and Marriott Courtyard expressed interest in the site, but these projects did not progress and the building remained vacant.
Support for change has been widespread. Chamber of Commerce Board Member Jeff Greenfield said: “I commend Mayor (Alan) Beach and the current Village Council for eliminating this blight in the business district.
“They succeeded where the previous two administrations failed. Credit also goes to David Orwasher of Breslin Realty for his perseverance with Rabbi Singer when others failed. A great team effort to improve (the) quality of life in Lynbrook for generations to come.