The most significant environmental issue in East Hills is noise, congestion and pollution from traffic on Glen Cove Rd.This badly-policed thoroughfare is a tremendous source urban-type impacts, and it severely diminishes Quality of Life, health, and undoubtedly property values of large swathes of East Hills. Several obvious steps can and should be taken by police and civic officials, which we will suggest below. As soon as practical the village should call a public hearing to discuss the issues related to Glen Cove Rd and begin acting on various common-sense reforms.The noise and disorder caused by traffic on Glen Cove Rd. has evolved exponentially over the years -- without any obvious planning or effort by village, town, or county planners to anticipate or ameliorate it. There is a mad race of construction vehicles based in Glen Cove, delivery trucks, service trucks, speeding cars, commuter students in the colleges on Northern Boulevard, and residents of surrounding communities that carries on around the clock. In addition to the environmental impacts Glen Cove Road has social and business impacts because it effectively locks down the community -- making it impractical and dangerous to cross east and west by foot or bicycle, and making it impractical to access either the Gateway or Northern Boulevard shopping centers by anything but motor vehicle. What can be done?
- Make the speed limit a uniform 30 miles per hour from the Expressway to Northern Boulevard (and probably beyond). There is no reason for vehicles to pass at 40 MPH through a predominantly residential corridor, and the additional speed creates geometrically increased noise, emissions, and dangers to wildlife (see our section on Roadkill). The same logic applies to many other roads in North Hempstead, such as Willis Avenue and Roslyn Road. In the case of Glen Cove Rd., the village of Brookville must be demanded to harmonize their speed down to 30 MPH, which his the village limit around Harbor Hill School.
- Prohibit trucks from engine braking and enforce noise controls with respect to tailpipes. various carting companies based in Glen Cove, many sporting some sort of “renegade” painting and adornments to their carting trucks, routinely disturb the peace and quiet of East Hills homes along Glen Cove Rd. at all hours of the night. In many communities in upstate NY, engine braking is prohibited around residential areas, so the ordinances are legal.
- Get the Nassau Police to patrol the roadway and enforce the laws. Nassau police need to adopt the same ethos as the New York City police and get out and patrol during their paid duty hours. This “Community Policing” is needed to enforce whatever traffic laws are already established.
- Perform a traffic and speed survey. The village must gather data by its own research contract to ascertain what is going on with Glen Cove Rd traffic, and use that as the basis for demanding action to fix the environmental and Quality of Life problems the traffic causes.
- A securely protected pedestrian-and-bicycle lane must be created along the Glen Cove Rd corridor to allow the community to re-integrate itself peacefully and safely. Residents should not be required to partake of the stress, cost, impersonal and unhealthy dependence on automobiles in order to reach their friends across the road or the shopping facilities that integrate and entertain the community.
We would urge civic associations and residents to find village board members who will takle up this issue and pursue it. Residents may wish to post on the Facebook website "East Hills Environment" to facilitate organizing efforts.