Documents and Photos for the
East Hills Architectural Review Board
Meeting(s) of September, 2015
See Extended Text Below

  1. 6 Northern Woods Drive -- Official Documents An application for the massive de-forestation of this beautiful lush property to clear and re-grade a backyard, despite a core provision of the Village architectural law stating the current topography of properties in the Village should be preserved (Village Code Section 271-186(A)(4)). ARB hearing September 28, 2015.

  2. 18 Lawn Drive -- Official Documents A proposed massive demolition, new home and multiple tree destruction in Country Estates off Chestnut Drive. The neighbors condemned the planned size and bemoaned the over-development in East Hills at the August hearing. The developer, notorious and prolific East Hills developer Shomrim Hedvat of Great Neck, submitted revised tree removal plans but no changes to the heavily-criticized architecture plan as of Friday, 9/4/15. ARB hearing re-scheduled to October 7, 2015.

  3. 65 Oak Drive-- Official Documents Another highly destructive appplication to cut down a 36" diameter Beech tree, a double-Magnolia, and five others (three alleged to be damaged). The proposed house is a typical over-sized 'box' design, 5618 square feet in size and almost thirty feet tall. The square footage is over double the current house. ARB hearing September 9, 2015.

  4. 35 Mimosa Drive -- Official Documents Almost unbelievable proposal to destroy twenty-one trees including 12 Norway Maples, a 26" diameter Sycamore/London Plane tree, and a 32" diameter White Pine. The proposed house is a grotesquelly over-designed peaked style (absurdly gabled like Swiss Family Robinson, to use former board members Brett Rosenfeld's memorable terms) of over 6,000 square feet in size. The application improperly omits the size of the current house for comparison. The proposed house would be almost thirty feet tall. ARB hearing September 28, 2015.

  5. 72 Planting Field Rd. -- Official Documents An application to demolish the current house and build one almost twice its size, increasing from 2027.6 square feet to 3909.4 square feet, and raising it from one story to two, 28 feet in height. Proposes to destroy two large Eastern Red Cedars of 10" and 12" in diameter to build and relocate a new driveway. ARB hearing September 10, 2015.

  6. 41 Great Oaks Road -- Official Documents Proposal to demolish one of the most charming old homes in Norgate, with a unique expansive slate roof that forms a landmark presence on the street. Further proposes to cut down three healthy trees -- a River Birch, a Beech, and a Yew along the neighbor's property-line to construct a driveway opposite from the current one -- a frivolous elective reason if there ever was one. The proposed house is completely out of character with most of the surrounding homes, which exhibit classic style or modern style with classical references. Original dimensions are improperly omitted; the proposed house would be 4498.4 square feet in size and 27 feet-ten inches tall. ARB hearing September 10, 2015.

  7. 80 Birch Drive -- Official Documents An astoundingly horrible application to cut down SEVEN apparently healthy trees including an Oak tree FIFTY-inches in diameter, three Beeches up to two-feet in diameter, two unspecificied "deciduous" trees, and a 12" Birch -- all for pools, lawns, service courts, and other highly subjective and optional reasons. The house proposed would be 6108.7 square feet and thirty feet tall, with two and one half stories. The horrible design is like an over-sized BARN. The builder, Robert Beer, and architect Jay Wallin, have cut a destructive and over-bearing path through East Hills. The builder was harshly criticized by the ARB chairman, but the two continue to get permission to destroy trees and over-build here. (At 90 Fir Drive they destroyed a majestic 100-foot Oak tree for a circular driveway -- with full complicity of the ARB.) ARB hearing September 10, 2015.

Documents for tree removals at 6 Northern Woods Drive. ARB Hearing September 9, 2015 at 8 PM in the Village Hall courtroom.

Documents for demolition and rebuilding at 18 Lawn Drive. ARB Hearing September 9, 2015 at 8 PM in the Village Hall courtroom.

Documents for demolition and rebuilding at 65 Oak Drive. ARB Hearing September 9, 2015 at 8 PM in the Village Hall courtroom.

Documents for demolition and rebuilding at 35 Mimosa Drive. ARB Hearing September 9, 2015 at 8 PM in the Village Hall courtroom.

Documents for demolition and rebuilding at 72 Planting Field Rd.. ARB Hearing September 10, 2015 at 8 PM in the Village Hall courtroom.

Documents for demolition and rebuilding at 41 Great Oaks Rd.. ARB Hearing September 10, 2015 at 8 PM in the Village Hall courtroom.

Documents for demolition and rebuilding at 80 Birch Drive. ARB Hearing September 10, 2015 at 8 PM in the Village Hall courtroom.

      The East Hills Village Code contains provisions to protect the local environment: to preserve the tree canopy (Section 186), to preserve the architectural harmony of the community (Section 271-185), and to halt the rampant demolitions and construction of large over-bearing new homes (Section 271-225). The Architectural Review Board (ARB) is the de-facto front-line environmental regulator of the Village. The Zoning Board of Appeals has a role but it hears far fewer cases, and does not deal with multiple demolitions and rebuildings, and propsed tree removals-by-the-dozen each month, as the ARB does. Anyone passing through East Hills will notice that the ARB has been failing in its environmental duties, voting in favor of the real-estate speculation that the Village administration now favors. But we have been trying hard to reverse this policy.

      In a reflection of the current gold-rush mentality in East Hills real estate, the ARB will hold not one but TWO sessions in September 2015 -- Wednesday and Thursday, September 9 and 10, at 8 PM in the courtroom. The Village currently refuses to post any documents from the applications being heard by ARB on its website -- DESPITE state law requiring that it make a good-faith effort to do so (Open Meeting Law: NY State Public Officers Law, Article 7, Section 103(e)).

      Therefore most residents are in the dark and have difficulty making sense of the vague letters they may receive about the proposal to rebuild a house nearby and/or "remove trees". The fact is, every month the ARB approves massive, ugly and inappropriate new houses and the destruction of dozens of healthy trees -- with no real oversight or public accountability. The Board is appointed in virtual secrecy with no open application process or public hearings on the nominees of the Mayor. The trustees are a rubber stamp. The media does not pay any attention.

      The ARB utterly fails to uphold the tree protection law or the architectural preservation law. Visits to streets like Poplar Drive and Birch Drive reveal the extremes of the current reckless over-development policy; and many other streets bear the ugly sterile imprint of the same trend of over-sized houses on denuded lots too small for the massive 5,000 to 6,000 square-foot homes being routinely approved. Animals are losing trheir shelter and sources of food, and this community is being degraded -- like so many others on Long Island. Conscientious people have resigned from the ARB, the most recent one quietly this winter.

      This month we are trying to improve the process by putting some documents online for residents to readily see in advance what is at stake. See below for photos and info-packet in PDF form.

      Please help me fight for our environment, trees and neighborhood character. I grew up here; I went to Roslyn High School and Yale. I fight for the environment throughout Nassau County. I need your help. Call me -- Richard Brummel -- at (516) 238-1646 to express your support and share your ideas, and attend the meetings Wednesday September 9 and Thursday, September 10, each starting at 8 PM in Village Hall. Thanks.

IF YOU AGREE ... in this age of Climate Change and species collapse, East Hills -- and elsewhere in our region -- needs far better environmental and ecological stewardship, please attend the hearings and/or provide me written testimony expressing your desire to preserve the trees and halt the over-building to:
Richard Brummel (516) 238-1646, Email: rxbrummel [at] gmail [dot] com. Thank you.