Road work ahead! Improvements, repaving and repair projects are all around you in the Town of North Hempstead as the town’s 2014-2018 Capital Plan forges ahead.
The town’s capital plan was unanimously approved in May by the town board with the intent of taking on major projects such as road repaving, repairing of town facilities and improving parks and just months later we are seeing real tangible results.
We started the process of developing our capital plan as soon as I took office in January by working closely with our finance team, commissioners and department heads. Basically, the capital plan presents a blueprint for the town’s investments in the future and how we plan to fund them.
From the start, it was critical for us to identify which projects might qualify for grant funding and which had grant funding soon to expire. A public work session was also scheduled so that we could receive valuable input from residents on projects that were important to them and their communities. We will continue to seek that input.
One of the biggest concerns of residents when large-scale projects begin to occur is, “Will my taxes go up?” Well, throughout this whole process, my main goal has been to make these critical and necessary improvements while backing it up with a way to pay for it, without raising taxes.
As summer nears its end, the number of capital projects which have been completed is impressive. The long-awaited flood mitigation project at Allen and Brian streets in New Hyde Park has been completed. For many years, residents in that neighborhood near Denton Avenue School had to fear every time there was significant rainfall. This project goes a long way to making sure that problem has been resolved.
In New Cassel, the Grand Street School was taken down early this summer to make way for affordable senior housing. This was a great example of a community revitalization project as residents came out in numbers to witness the demolition.
Our vision for a revitalized waterfront in North Hempstead in now underway as the one-mile extension of the Hempstead Harbor Shoreline trail has begun, which will now make it one of the longest nature trails on Long Island. This project is in keeping with our goal of turning our parks into beautiful recreational destinations for families to enjoy.
We’re also proud of the recent upgrades to Provost Park in Garden City Park—beautiful passive park that we can all be proud of.
Safety is also a major component of our capital plan as $2 million has been dedicated annually for the ongoing repaving of roads throughout the town. One of the major road reconstruction projects in our plan is happening on Grand Boulevard in Westbury, a road that was ridden with potholes. The road was repaved this summer as a temporary measure, with a major reconstruction project to come soon using capital plan funding and grants from the State Department of Transportation.
Another safety initiative that was just completed was the construction of a right-hand turning lane on Manhasset Avenue onto Plandome Road, coming out of Manhasset High School and the Manhasset LIRR. This will alleviate traffic and enhance safety for pedestrians.
We will be starting another project at North Sheets Creek, conducting a water-quality improvement project and replacing the Manorhaven boat ramp. The project will include constructing a concrete seawall, relocating and reconstructing the parking area, installing drainage structures, restoring wetland areas and conducting maintenance dredging.
I am proud of what we have been able to accomplish thus far and I thank our Departments of Highways, Parks and Recreation, and Public Works for the tremendous job they have done to accomplish these projects—and this is just the beginning.