Wearing a hard hat, Lynbrook Mayor Alan Beach blew a golden whistle on Monday to signal the start of a project that he had long waited for: the demolition of the Capri Lynbrook Motor Inn.
“This property has long been a nuisance for the village,” Beach said, “and I’m thrilled to be here today to help bring a welcome revitalization that not only will add foot traffic for local businesses, but also bring the kind of smart development that strengthens the community as a whole.”
Beach spoke as the razing of the motel began. The site will soon be home to the $24 million, 80-unit Cornerstone at Yorkshire apartment complex. It will be built by the Farmingdale-based Terwilliger & Bartone Properties at 5 Freer St., and will replace a motel with a long history of controversy, including drug overdose deaths and arrests for alleged prostitution. Leasing of the units is slated to begin next summer, with an official opening in the fall of 2021.
“We have long heard the community’s resounding call to tear down the Capri Motel,” said Anthony Bartone, managing partner of Terwilliger & Bartone, “and we’re thrilled to have started knocking it down today to make way for luxury new apartment-style living that will become woven into the fabric of the village community.”
In February, the Nassau County Industrial Development Agency granted Terwilliger & Bartone a mortgage-recording tax abatement, a sales-tax abatement and a 20-year payment-in-lieu-of-taxes agreement for the four-story building. Its payments will begin at the present tax level of $228,155 per year and gradually increase to $1.1 million by the PILOT’s final year. Village officials approved the project, 4-1, in November.
At Monday’s groundbreaking, Beach and Bartone were joined by Deputy Mayor Michael Hawxhurst and Trustees Ann Marie Reardon and Robert Boccio, as well as Fran Terwilliger, the other managing partner of Terwilliger & Bartone, county IDA Chairman Richard Kessel, Lynbrook Police Chief Brian Paladino and Chamber of Commerce President Stephen Wangel.
The project comes after village officials sought to shut down the motel for many years, and represents the culmination of the developers’ years-long effort to build luxury rental apartments in Lynbrook. Terwilliger & Bartone’s previous project, the Cornerstone at Lynbrook, was nixed in February 2019 after resident backlash over its size and scope. For this plan, the developers sought public feedback and hosted open houses before finalizing it.
“Lynbrook residents have also been an instrumental part of this transformation,” Terwilliger said, “and we appreciate all of the thoughtful dialogue that helped guide our design decisions to ensure the Cornerstone at Yorkshire matches the character of the community and is a transformation the village can be proud of.”