By Richard Tedesco
Several Hoffman Road residents voiced strong objections at last Tuesday night’s New Hyde Park village board meeting to a proposed Jericho Turnpike medical office in their neighborhood.
The residents expressed concerns about parking problems the office that Albertson resident Dr. Philip Mathew is seeking to open at 1818 Jericho Tpke. would aggravate on their street. They said existing businesses already make it problematic to park on the street where they live.
“We’re very much against this, the residents of Hoffman Road. We’ve had enough,” said Linda McLaughlin, who lives on the street.
She said if pictures of parking in the area that Mathew’s attorney, Samuel Miller, submitted to the board were taken this week or last week, they don’t represent the typical parking congestion.
The location proposed for the medical office is currently occupied by White Cross Shoes and a medical equipment repair firm that would be vacating the premises where the medical office would open. Tinkertots, described by residents as a “Mommy and Me” business, would continue to occupy the building.
“I’m looking to start a practice here,” Mathew, an internal medicine practitioner, said.
He said he might look to add another medical practitioner at the location, which would have six examination rooms. Initially, he said he would accept walk-in patients along with those who make appointments until he builds up his practice.
Mathew said he plans to apply for affiliation with Northwell or Winthrop Hospitals. He said he currently works upstate in Binghamton, where he is affiliated with Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital.
Miller said a medical assistant and a secretary would work at the medical office site, which he said has six parking spaces in the rear of the building. He said there also are 10 metered parking spots on the south side of Jericho Turnpike, in addition to parking spaces on Hoffman Road.
Miller said the parking problems the Hoffman Road residents cited are no different than similar problems that residents on other side streets off Jericho Turnpike face. But he said his client would have no objection to parking restrictions being imposed on Hoffman Road.
“I think the residents are ganging up on a business,” Mathew said, in reaction to residents’ comments during the special use application hearing.
When Mathew told village trustees they shouldn’t be “bullied” by residents into taking a position that would adversely affect his application, New Hyde Park Mayor Robert Lofaro reacted.
“We’re not so naïve that we don’t know the difference between right and wrong,” Lofaro said, adding that the board members were all familiar with the area being discussed.
Hoffman Road residents uniformly said the prospective doctor’s office would make if more difficult to park on their street.
“It’s going to be a nightmare for us,” said longtime resident Joe Cummo.
Alexandra Cuervo said the time it takes to treat patients at the office would add to the problems Hoffman Road residents already have in trying to park on the street where they live.
“It’s going to be like Queens, where you can’t park anywhere,” Cuervo said.
Lofaro said the village trustees would reserve decision on the doctor’s application and would possibly vote on the application at its September 13 meeting.
The board also reserved decision at Tuesday night’s meeting on a special use application for a physical fitness training facility at 1632 Jericho Tpke., pending review of the plans for the location by the Nassau County Planning Commission.
Floral Park native Stephen Wicks said he is seeking to open the facility for one-on-one fitness training for people of all ages. He said four trainers would be employed at the facility to conduct 30-minute training sessions daily from 6 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.
“It’s more a mature clientele that we have,” said Wicks, who currently operates another fitness facility, Body King Studio, at 178 Jericho Tpke. in Floral Park.
The Floral Park facility employs eight trainers, Wicks said, and eventually he said he plans to have the same number of trainers at the New Hyde Park location
By Richard Tedesco