CEMCO Discusses Potential of Sonic in East Meadow [POLL]

Nothing is set in stone, but Sonic may be considering an East Meadow location.

At last week's Council of East Meadow Community Organizations (CEMCO) meeting, Elizabeth Fries, CEMCO's corresponding secretary, shared that she heard from a co-owner of Aura that there's a possibility of Sonic opening where Rita's Ices once stood.

CEMCO officers and residents shared an initial hesitation. Parking is already tight, especially if the new establishment were to operate as the typical Sonic drive-up location.

"I work near the Deer Park location," East Meadow resident Bill Alderman said. "If you go down Deer Park Avenue, it's bumper-to-bumper still. If that were to come here, it would be a disaster."

CEMCO President Joseph Parisi agreed, but said it's important to keep an open mind until the entire proposal is made clear.

"We need to get the facts," Parisi said. "If it were going to be as we're describing with multiple drive-thru services, it would not work and we all know that, but we need to hear the proposal and have an exchange of ideas."

Parisi also added that Sonic could potentially bring in jobs and business to the community, and in this economy, "that's important."

Fries ended the discussion by saying that nothing has been set in stone, and the community will be updated as more information comes in.

In January, Sonic denied that there was interest in an East Meadow location.

“At this point in time we do not have anything planned or in the works for East Meadow,” Sonic Representative Becky Rickard told Patch.

Michael Ganci contributed to this story.

Jon L. November 29, 2011 at 02:40 PM
Honestly I don't like Sonic but some new blood on Hempstead Turnpike would not hurt. Sadly it will never make it through the TOH ZBA, it does not fit with the 'suburban charm' of the People's Republic of Hempstead. While I agree with Mr. Alderman's assessment of the traffic situation as set up today it could very easily be mitigated with proper traffic control devices and efficient entry and exit designs for the parking lot. I would love to see any plan put before the ZBA before I say yes or no but I doubt it will even get that far. Mao Tse Murray and her minions are already planning the photo opportunities to crush any growth that interferes with her 1950's Bill Levitt vision for the PRoH. Let's not forget the fact that this type of commerce would generate sales tax revenue for Nassau County and perhaps create a job or two, we would not want that. This project has Bellmore White Castle Take 2 written all over it. This is why no one wants to do business with the Ogre in Town Hall.
paul November 29, 2011 at 02:46 PM
Honestly, your non scientific poll questions always have to many parts to it. Can not answer directly......
paul November 29, 2011 at 02:51 PM
Would you like to see Sonic come to East Meadow? Yes or No is enough.... Yes, it would bring in jobs and business.(common sense would dictate this part) No, East Meadow has enough of these types of places, and traffic would be a nightmare. Traffic would be no better or worst than it is now. Who keeps mentioning traffic in East Meadow, they need to stay off the roads they have no idea what a true traffic tie up really is...
Michael Ganci (Editor) November 29, 2011 at 02:53 PM
Thanks for the comments Paul! That's what the comment section is for!
paul November 29, 2011 at 02:57 PM
As a company just to let you know, White Castle as a business model and company is excellent. It is not Mcdonalds but an excellent business model nonetheless.. Read about the company and you will be astonished..
Bill Alderman November 29, 2011 at 10:06 PM
Sorry to disagree Paul, I work not far from the Sonic on Deer Park Ave in North babylon and last night at 9pm the line to get in and park in the roller derby lanes was out the parking lot , bumper to bumper North across Davis Street and across Middle St. Cars and Suvs were lined up worse than on the Meadowbrook pkwy wait to exit to the Mall and not allowing traffic to pass , which is a horrible hazard. Traffic would indeed be worse than it is now. And a simple yes or no does not cut it in this case. HOWEVER .. one smart lady at CEMCO said that not all Sonic restaurants have drive stalls , like in PA ( I have never seen one though) and she suggested that they might be enticed to taking the Pearl paint location sans the stalls. which would work. I hear the only other business interested in a likewise Nassau location is Joe's Crab Shack.
paul November 29, 2011 at 11:43 PM
When Checkers first opened in East Meadow there were lines into the street. The county has rules and regulations on how far a drive thru etc type of establishment has to be off a main road, I am sure this would be addressed if needed. I don't really refer to that as a traffic tie up, a traffic hazard yes. Yes Sonic has both types of locations and I am certain if built they want to be good neighbors not bad ones. When places are new they bring in new customers and then people move on and go back to their previous locations. If the business is that good off Deer Park avenue all I can say is WOW that is great. I am sure over time it will diminish. Happy there were lines and lines of people. Don't knock it.......Look at it as a current success story..
paul November 29, 2011 at 11:50 PM
The Pearl location is something that the shopping center owner would need to decide to see if they will subdivide and have smaller stores. I doubt that. I wouldn't.... The owner is much better trying to entice a larger type of establishment with a long term lease. The parking lot is a big asset for a large type of store. Not a bunch small schlocky locations that are everywhere.
Jon L. November 29, 2011 at 11:54 PM
First off, after taking a second glance at the article I noticed that it came from someone who heard something from someone. While I like the guys who are running things over at Aura I don't know if I would have a whole session at a meeting based on rumor, guess there is nothing else going on in East Meadow when CEMCO takes something like this on. Second, I would rather deal with the traffic and see a business that generates tax revenue than the vacant storefronts that exist up and down Hempstead Turnpike. Not to mention other food establishments would like the spill over effect of Sonic having long lines, etc. But as stated earlier it will all be for not as Kate Jong-il will shoot it down.
paul November 30, 2011 at 12:04 AM
There is some truth that someone interested in opening a Sonic originally showed an interest in that property. I cant believe this but it may have happened again, we slightly agreed on something...
Rick Price November 30, 2011 at 02:11 PM
Paul, while some of your thoughts are certainly valid, I take exception to the "small shlocky store" reference. As a small business owner for over thirty years I resent that characterization of what is certainly the life's blood of free enterprise. Also as an East Meadow resident for over thirty years, if you don't believe it will cause further disruption of traffic on Hempstead Turnpike I strongly disagree.
paul November 30, 2011 at 03:46 PM
I totally agree that a small business owner is the heartbeat of America, but where is it that you got offended? I use the phrase small schlocky stores. It does not say all small stores are schlocky... Do you own a nail salon, a discount variety store that sells over priced essential items to people that don't know any better, do you own a cash for gold, do you own a creepy looking card store, do you own a hookah shop, maybe a barber shop that also buys and sells jewelry and plays dice in the back, maybe a mobile food truck with no license etc. Please tell me so I can tell you in my opinion if it is schlocky.... As far as traffic is concerned, you think that one more small fast food place with a large parking lot will make an extreme difference, you are kidding me right. Be Honest Be Proud that's the American Way!!!!!!!!!!!
Rick Price November 30, 2011 at 05:34 PM
All of the businesses you mentioned with the exception of a "food truck with no license" or perhaps a store with an "illegal dice game in the back" are legitimate, legal small businesses generally owned by hard working folks who put in long hours to make a fair and reasinable living. I myself am in the financial services (check cashing, money orders, Western Union, Lottery) business. I can't wait to see your comments on that business. Just because you don't patronize a particular type of business doesn't mean its not appreciated by the many, many who feel much more comfortable there. To me "shlocky" is a derogatory slur and the generalization in your post "not a bunch of small , shlocky stores that are everywhere" seems like its meant to stir emotions. As for the traffic, no I'm not kidding. Lets take a vote of East Meadow residents and see who feels it won't cause further disruption to what is already congested. I am honest and proud and a Patriotic American - all the way !!!!
Rick Price November 30, 2011 at 05:35 PM
Bill Alderman November 30, 2011 at 05:38 PM
The conversation came up as a precursor , because the property landlord alerted some of the businesses that are members of CEMCO about renewed interest.It was asked of the group if you thought there might be a better location within EM to suggest. One suggestion that they might look at the Syms/ Filenes location on Merrick Av, which might suit their online corporate blueprint better. There was others ideas and concerns as well. But this is what Cemco does. Discusses the concerns and issues of East Meadow to try to make everyone happy with out pristine community....unlike some other towns.
paul November 30, 2011 at 05:49 PM
paul December 02, 2011 at 03:47 AM
Bill, please see the definition of pristine: pris·tine [pris-teen, pri-steen; especially Brit. pris-tahyn] adjective 1. having its original purity; uncorrupted or unsullied. 2. of or pertaining to the earliest period or state; primitive. You are kidding me right? I think you are drinking the ground water.....
Strug Lynn December 02, 2011 at 01:46 PM
Hey, you get a great value for your dollar and a quick and professional haircut (and a hot towel) in that "barber shop that also buys and sells jewelry and plays dice in the back". Pick on someone else.
paul January 25, 2012 at 04:12 PM
To those that appear concerned in a negative way about Sonic, I have uploaded a picture of their business model. That is why they are trying to obtain variances. It will be a nice sprawling location. If it works it will only create an upswing in other local businesses in the shopping center.
paul October 06, 2012 at 02:41 AM
Found this on the TOH website... 951/12. - 954/12. EAST MEADOW - Callahan's Restaurant Corp., Special exception to use part of premises for place of public assembly & amusement (cabaret, live music-indoors & dancing); Special exception for outdoor dining & special exception for accessory use (outdoor bar & storage); Variance in off-street parking; Maintain 10' high fence., S/E cor. Hempstead Tpke. & East Meadow Ave., a/k/a 1964 Hempstead Tpke. (S.E.Q.R. determination not made).... I am sure the TOH will deny this request too. As they should..... Sonic Billy Deans etc.....


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