Bryant Avenue: One Thoroughfare, Two Worlds

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Bryant Avenue is a busy artery that runs through Roslyn Harbor and connects the village of Roslyn, on one end, to Glen Head and the peninsula of Glen Cove on the other. Many residents use it to walk their dogs, take a jog or go for a stroll. It is a beautiful tree-lined street with houses that date back to the 1800s nestled among other luxurious homes that line the Engineers Country Club Golf Course. As it transitions into Glen Cove Avenue by the Greenvale LIRR station, the homes drop in price, but the homeowners have no less pride in their community and value their quality of life every bit as much.

Recently, RXR Corporation announced that it plans to build a residential development of 92 three-story townhouses, serviced by underground garages and a five story manor house with 52 apartments on the grounds of Engineers Country Club. The project will need many variances from the Incorporated Village of Roslyn Harbor.

The project was announced in early November with much fanfare at the Nassau County Museum of Art. Some residents were able to attend in person, while the majority were listening in on Zoom without the ability to comment or speak. The presentation was well orchestrated, with the mayor of Roslyn Harbor, Sandy Quentzel, introducing Joe Graziose, the Executive VP of Residential Development at RXR. It was clear that they have a good relationship, and have spent time creating a plan that would work for some of the residents of Roslyn Harbor.

The glitzy presentation, however, did not acknowledge the impact it will have on the surrounding community. There was no mention of the impact on taxpayers who will see their property values drop significantly as a result of the project in its current iteration.

There was no discussion of how the development will interact with its surrounding environment. Over 180+ new residents will have a serious impact on our stormwater catch basins. Moreover, RXR is proposing placing a new road at the already busy three-way intersection of Glen Cove Avenue and Back Road. We can expect increased carbon emissions along with significantly more traffic at this critical intersection. That intersection isn’t able to handle the current traffic, which includes all traffic from the north, a Nassau County bus line, two school district buses, cars and walker going to the train station,

The meeting had no discussion about wildlife conservation for the many animals that currently roam the land. Last, the presenters failed to mention the loss of the beautiful sunset, which Roslyn Harbor and Glen Head residents will no longer see each night because their view will be obstructed by a five-story manor house.

During the presentation, a resident who was listening in on Zoom posted in the comment sections, “You know, we have neighbors who live on Glen Cove Avenue.” It is clear that RXR has made a conscious decision to build its access road along the less affluent side of the Engineers Club, along Glen Cove Avenue, so as not to upset the more affluent residents of Roslyn Harbor at the other end of the club. Community is defined by a feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests, and goals. Do we live in a community, or in a village of two cities?

—Dena Weiner

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