September 27, 2012 | 910 views
Vacant Gibson buildings up for sale
Two vacant strip malls on Gibson Boulevard, which have been drawing the ire of neighbors for years, are finally for sale. A sign announcing their status now stands between the two empty buildings, which once housed about a dozen businesses.
With the property now for sale, Valley Stream Mayor Ed Fare said he expects action. Village officials want to see the property developed, he noted, and are sympathetic toward residents who live near the abandoned buildings.
The property is being listed for $3 million by Massey Knakal Realty Services. Dominick Minerva Jr., the attorney representing the buildings’ owner, Dr. Leonard Bleicher, said the price is negotiable. “I believe he’ll consider offers in a range,” Minerva said.
Bleicher has received approval from the village’s Board of Zoning Appeals to build a 47,500-square-foot, 39-unit housing complex on the property, though he most likely will not follow through on the project. Minerva said that the approval is good only through the end of the year, but he added that his client would seek an extension because the property is being marketed based on the approved development.
Minerva said that Bleicher, who has been unable to secure financing to build the development, is willing to consider a partnership, but his preference would be to sell the land. “I believe he’d like to find a buyer for the project,” Minerva said.
Fare said that his preference would have been for Bleicher to build the housing complex and rid Gibson Boulevard of the vacant stores. However, realizing that that is no longer a viable option, Fare is hopeful that a suitable buyer can be found, and quickly. He said he doesn’t want to see the property just sitting there for sale for years.
“Do you think I’m happy seeing that blight in the village?” he asked. “Of course not. The village is pursuing every available option to develop the property.”
Fare said that the village has been in touch with several developers who might be interested in building on the property. Eminent domain proceedings are not out of the question, he explained, and several residents have encouraged that option.