Huntington Landmark Gone Despite Residents Efforts To Save It
Despite the efforts from many Huntington residents an Historic building has been demolished. In it’s place a TD Bank will be built.
In 2011, a petition containing approximately 1000 signatures from people who hoped to preserve the building was submitted to the town board. The purpose was to request a public hearing to approve an historic designation which would save the building from destruction.
The proposal to hold a public hearing was rejected by three members of the Huntington Town Board. Those members were Supervisor Frank Petrone, Councilman Mark Cuthbertson and Councilwoman Glenda Jackson. Councilwoman Jackson was since defeated in her last re-election attempt by newly elected Councilman Eugene Cook. Some residents feel Ms. Jackson’s vote on this issue was among the contributing factors that led to her defeat last November.
Photo Taken 12/9/12
Councilman Mark Mayoka and Councilwoman Susan Berland voted in favor of the public hearing on the preservation of the building. During the process, Councilman Mayoka stated, “The Old Huntington Hotel Building deserves our protection as defined under Town Code.” He made reference to code 198-40.1 which states, possesses special character, or historic or aesthetic interest, or value as part of the broad cultural, political, economic or social history of the Town…because of its unique location…represents an established visual or aesthetic feature of the neighborhood.
Town historian Robert Hughes stated “The building plays an interesting part in the development of the town in the 1920s. It was a culminating event in the town’s explosive growth just before the Depression.”
January 2011 Town Board Meeting
The January 2011 town board meeting was a very heated one. Some residents even came dressed in 1920’s attire to help bring attention to the issue.
Other concerns about replacing the landmark building with a drive-thru bank included traffic and safety issues.
The building was last owned by Joe Willen, owner of Advantage Title who has recently re-located his business to Melville.
Advantage Title has contributed to the campaign’s of both Supervisor Petrone and Councilman Cuthbertson. Records from the New York State Board of Elections show that Advantage Title contributed $1750.00 to the Friends of Frank Petrone between 2008-2010 and $4300.00 to the Friends of Mark Cuthbertson from 2006 through 2012. Advantage Title also contributed $4150.00 to the Town of Huntington Democratic Committee from 2007 through 2012.