Plans to divide the property into three pieces -- including one for homes to be built on -- are in lieu of a joint hearing with the city council and planning board, according to the Mansion's attorney.
An application submitted late last year seeks to split the property into three different designations, said Kathleen Deegan Dickson, lawyer for the hotel and conference center.
One designation would determine “contributory structures” to be protected, referring to those features which contribute to the historic nature of the site. This includes the 1910 mansion, its garden and pool.
Another designation, "contributory grounds," refers to the 55-acre site’s open areas which lend to the visual character of the property and are important to the community. This would preserve the grass fields visible from Dosoris Lane and Old Tappan Road, Deegan Dickson said.
The remaining land, with the approval of the city council, would be developed residentially, she said. That 17-acre parcel is currently a wooded area along Lattingtown Road.
Deegan Dickson said an initial determination that that parcel could fit 49 housing lots has been reduced to 46, saying the houses would make for a better fit visually with the latter number.
The property’s owners have held meetings with various homeowners’ associations and neighbors to field questions and listen to concerns, Deegan Dickson said, and the exchanges have resulted in some modifications to the plans.
She said no dates have been set for public hearings on the matter because the city’s council and planning board need to find time when they can both be present.
She stressed that the application is not just about development.
“It’s a way that the Glen Cove Mansion and its grounds are going to be maintained in perpetuity, and the city will not lose any tax base,” she said.
Mayor Ralph Suozzi, who worked at the Mansion as a teenager, said the property’s owners could tear down the building if they wanted, and expressed satisfaction that something is in the works which would preserve the historic and aesthetic elements of the former Pratt estate.
Suozzi said he recommended outreach to the surrounding community and asked to be kept informed of the plans as things move forward.