Glen Cove Senior Center may lose nearby parking lot


For Ruth Yuen, the Glen Cove Senior Center is more than just a place to pass the time — it’s a vital retreat where she finds companionship, engagement and support. Despite the challenge of finding parking nearby, the 89-year-old widow drives herself to the center from her Glen Cove home, and spends as much time there as she can.
But seniors like Yuen, who have used the center’s resources for 21 years, could face a serious problem: the loss of 16 parking spaces at 115 Glen St., across the street from the center.
“It’s very important for me to go to the senior center,” Yuen explained. “I live alone, and the senior center is like a second home.”
The city has leased the Glen Street lot for years, and allowed senior center users to park there, but the estate of the lot, Car Care Co., is considering terminating the lease, which would effectively end the arrangement.
Last June, the Glen Cove Board of Zoning approved the construction of a three-story apartment building with a total of eight studios, 16 one and five two bedroom apartments by the developer 115 Glen Street Property Owner LLC. The approval included a series of variances, and at a meeting on Feb. 6, the city Planning Board finalized the development’s architectural plan.

Since the previous mayoral administrations of Reggie Spinello and Tim Tenke, 115 Glen Street Property Owner. has made several requests for zoning variances for the half-acre site. The current zoning regulations in the central business district allow for mixed-use, residential-commercial development, but limit projects that are solely residential to properties of at least an acre.
At a pre-City Council meeting on Feb. 20, council members Marsha Silverman and Kevin Maccarone discussed the process by which developers submit proposals. Maccarone explained that developers can request zoning changes or variances if their proposals are rejected by the City Council, leading to review by the planning and zoning boards. Silverman expressed concern about the lack of parameters for developers to proceed to the boards after a City Council rejection. Both suggested potential reforms to the process.
115 Glen Street Property Owner could not be reached for comment by press time.
For residents like Yuen, senior centers become more vital resources as people live longer. The Glen Street parking lot enables more seniors to take part in the center’s programs, which are available Monday through Friday and include exercise, art and other classes, as well as social activities like games and music. The City of Glen Cove was named a Nassau County Age-Friendly Center of Excellence in 2017 by New York state, and is now one of five Centers of Excellence in the state.
“It’s actually not just for this particular generation of seniors,” Carol Waldman, Age Friendly liaison to Nassau County, said. “We’re concerned about future generations, the aging population is growing, and the parking is shrinking.”
Waldman said she is not opposed to the developer’s proposed development, but she hopes to negotiate parking spaces for the center with the developer.
In Nassau, the population of those ages 65 to 69 rose from 80,398 in 2020 to 81,776 a year later. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the number of U.S. residents 65 years and older will increase by 105.2 percent by 2060. New York state’s 65-and-older population is over 3.5 million.
The senior center is funded by grants from the United States Administration on Aging, the New York State Office for the Aging and the Nassau County Office for the Aging, as well as the county’s Senior Activity Generational Endowment. But the facility’s financial stability hinges on maintaining or increasing its membership, because higher enrollment potentially means increased financial support from the county. With over 2,000 members, the center also relies on the federal Older Americans Act.
City Councilman Michael Ktistakis, a member of the zoning board in 2023 who cast the only vote of opposition to the apartment project, emphasized the need for municipalities to bolster their defenses against developer-driven agendas, and maintain a more comprehensive evaluation process that considers long-term implications of proposed developments. He highlighted concerns about infrastructure strain, traffic congestion, and the preservation of community resources like emergency medical services — and the senior center.
“This project was totally wrong from the very beginning,” Ktistakis said. “I never agreed upon it. We have to be a little bit more strategic; our defenses have to be a little bit more alert when it comes to developers. When any developer comes in, they should consider how they can give back to our city. This developer didn’t do that.”