Town of Hempstead Approves Grand Ave Overlay District in Baldwin

The Town of Hempstead took a big step forward this week by approving the Grand Ave Overlay Zoning District for the hamlet of Baldwin.

This new code will allow mixed use development, help small business, make the area more walkable, and provide public benefits with new redevelopment proposals.

A big thank you to Hempstead Supervisor Don Clavin, Senior Councilwoman Dorothy Goosby, Councilman Anthony D’Esposito, and the rest of the Board members who voted for it.

Credit should also be given to former Councilwoman Erin King-Sweeney, who pushed through the plan, and Nassau County Executive Laura Curran, who encouraged the zoning as well.  The bulk of the planning work was done during the tenure of former Town Supervisor Laura Gillen as well.

This zoning plan helped lead to the awarding of $10 million from the NYS Downtown Revitalization Initiative, which was shepherded along with leadership from NYS Assemblywoman Judy Griffin and NYS Senator Todd Kaminsky.  The planning team working on the new code included VHB along with Vision Long Island.  Special thanks to the Hempstead Town staff Rich Regina, Rebecca Sinclair, Shelley Brazley, and Alex Vasullo.

But even with the help of elected officials, no plan moves forward in any community without the support of local civics and chambers of commerce.  In Baldwin, the Civic Association led by Karen Montalbano, Darien Ward, and the local Chamber of Commerce led by Erik Mahler, were key in coming to a consensus after multiple public meetings with hundreds of residents.

The code will be tweaked a bit to reflect some density controls.  It’s also worth noting that there will be pressure on the Town to do just large scale projects, but the bulk of downtown redevelopments are small and medium scale.  No matter what comes forward the success of this plan has been due to local folks coming together.  Vision hopefully that that process will continue going forward.

You can read more at Newsday.