Many once empty storefronts in downtown Garden City are now filled with construction workers scrambling to put the finishing touches on several new establishments.
A New Leaf, described as a "high end" English tea emporium, replaced Garden City Chemists next to The Burger Spot on Seventh Street. Construction has begun and is expected to last approximately two-and-a-half months, according to John Wilton, chair of the Garden City Merchants, Professionals & Retailers Group.
Village Deli, which opened in May, replaced Hoffmann's on Seventh. "He's done a great job," Wilton said of the owner, Rami Rabie. "He's spent about $700,000. If you could go there it's a great presentation."
On Franklin Avenue, State Farm Insurance now occupies the space once filled by Garden City Stitches, which closed in January after doing business in the village for approximately 35 years.
Prost Grill & Garten, an authentic German restaurant, is slated to open this week next to Madison Taylor Salon on Franklin Avenue, where Village Valet once did business. "It's absolutely spectacular," Wilton said. "It's going to knock your socks off."
Wilton said a dumpster and some grease barrels in the southeast corner of Parking Field 7S are a tremendous eyesore. "With the help of Mr. [Robert] Schoelle and Mr. [Dennis] Donnelly we believe that will be removed," he said. "It's a source sometimes of rodents from the Long Island Rail Road and sometimes local businesses ... So hopefully that will be done soon enough."
"August is coming. It's the doldrums for all our merchants and retailers," Wilton said. "They both suffer the consequences since the vast majority of our village is on vacation ... Any catering or dollars you can expend - bathing suits, ice or whatever it may be - now is the time to spend the money. The heat and the rain hurt them in July across the board collectively."