Tags Posts tagged with "Renovations"


Vanderbilt Museum Stoll Wing Diorama. Vanderbilt Museum photo

The Suffolk County Vanderbilt Museum, 180 Little Neck Road Centerport has announced the upcoming revitalization of its Stoll Wing, a natural-history exhibit space dedicated to the spirit of exploration and learning.

The Stoll Wing project is made possible by generous support from the Roy M. Speer Foundation, which donated funds to honor the legacy of Charles H. Stoll.

The Museum has closed the Stoll Wing and Habitat Hall through mid-October. The renewal of the natural history exhibits represents the deepening of the Museum’s commitment to excellence in public education and stewardship.

This project will include updated signage, improved lighting, and elevated finishings. As part of the architect Ecodepot’s design, the renovation will also create additional vitrines to display ethnographic materials collected on the American Museum of Natural History’s (AMNH) famous 1928 Stoll-McCracken Expedition to the Siberian Arctic.

The eight Stoll Wing dioramas display fifteen animals brought home by Charles H. Stoll (1887-1988) and his wife, Merle, between 1922 and 1969. Charles H. Stoll was a noted explorer, big-game hunter, and jurist who joined the Vanderbilt Museum Board of Trustees in 1969. He funded the Stoll-McCracken Expedition under the auspices of the AMNH, and the donation of his personal collection to the VanderbiltMuseum reflected his belief in the organization’s mission of informal education and enjoyment for the people of Long Island.

“We thank you for your understanding while this project is underway. We look forward to sharing the revitalized Stoll Wing with you soon,” said Elizabeth Wayland-Morgan, Executive Director at the Vanderbilt Museum in a press release.

The renovation of the Stoll Wing is made possible by the generosity of the Roy M. Speer Foundation. Additional support for the conservation projects at the Suffolk County Vanderbilt Museum comes from the Robert David Lion Gardiner Foundation, the Gerry Charitable Trust, the Pritchard Charitable Trust, and committed members of the Long Island community.

For more information on how to support the Suffolk County VanderbiltMuseum and its programs, please visit: www.vanderbiltmuseum.org/joinsupport/

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Summer construction at Kings Park High School. Photo by Amanda Perelli

As Kings Park students return to school next week, the children and their parents may notice buildings across the district have gotten a face-lift.

Kings Park school district has utilized the summer to make progress on some of the more than $41 million in capital improvements approved under the December 2015 bond. 

At Kings Park High School, community members will find a newly resurfaced parking lot in the back of the building. New LED lighting and several dry wells have been installed to alleviate drainage issues to better accommodate students and staff, according to Superintendent Timothy Eagen.

The Kingsmen Kafe. Photo by Amanda Perelli

“The actual parking footprint or square footage will be about the same,” Eagen said. “We anticipate either about the same or a few additional spots, but not a substantial change.”                

On the athletic fields, the former Kingsmen Kafe has been demolished to make way for a modernized concession stand with bathrooms.

Over at William T. Rogers Middle School, both the boys and girls locker rooms have been fully renovated with clean and functional lockers. The district’s staff has also undertaken installation of a new irrigation system, that covers the football, lacrosse, soccer and ball fields to encourage softer, greener and more consistent grass coverage in the future, Eagen wrote in a community update letter.

The district was hoping to replace the entire roof of the middle school this summer, according to the superintendent, but construction was halted when asbestos tar was found under the upper portion of the building. Eagen said this caused the roof replacement to be pushed to next summer to allow for further planning and construction at a time without any students in the building. The roof of the lower portion of the building has been completed for the 2018-19 school year.

R.J.O. Intermediate School has had new fencing installed along the track and field area, in addition to the parking lot.

The R.J.O. track has been an issue for several years, and this grant will allow us to finally make
this area usable and safer for students and the community.”

— Timothy Eagen

The district has been awarded a $100,000 grant through the New York State Municipal Facilities Program, which they applied for last summer after learning about it from state Assemblyman Michael Fitzpatrick (R-St. James), according to Eagen. This money will help fund plans to resurface the intermediate school’s track next summer.

“The R.J.O. track has been an issue for several years, and this grant will allow us to finally make
this area usable and safer for students and the community,” Eagen said.

The building’s current cinder track will be replaced with an asphalt surface with lane lines The district anticipates that walkers will use this area more after it’s renovated.   

School officials are pressing forward with improvements to the district’s security including plans for security vestibules at each building. In order to bypass a lengthy six to 12 month review process, Eagen said the district will classify the vestibules as maintenance work or repairs, and construct them inside the existing buildings rather than as an exterior add-on feature. The district has set aside $100,000 for this work,
according to the superintendent, and the vestibules are expected to be completed this fall at both the high school and middle school.

File photo by TBR News Media

Greater Long Island Running Club, of Plainview, will be awarding  at least one $5,000 grant to a Long Island public high school track and field program this year.

Selection of the winning high school(s) will be based on: the need of the school; the purpose for which the grant would be used; the benefit to the program and the student-athletes who are part of the program; and the benefit to the community of which the high school is a part.

In 2016, the running club awarded a $5,000 grant to Brentwood High School to help reinstitute and revitalize the school’s cross country program, which had not been offered since 2010 because of lack of funding. In 2017, to help Central Islip High School kids afford running shoes, the club brought the entire boys and girls teams into Sayville Running Company for shoes.

“High school runners represent the future of our sport,” said Linda Ottaviano, the running club’s executive director. “We are thrilled to be able to help deserving high school programs, high school athletes and the communities that they are a part of.”

Applications can be obtained by calling the running club office at 516-349-7646 or emailing [email protected].  Applications must be received by May 1.

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The children's section of the Port Jefferson Free Library. File photo by Heidi Sutton

Don’t judge the Port Jefferson Free Library by its cover, at least not before ground is broken on potential renovations.

The board of directors at the Port Jefferson Free Library are mulling ideas for upgrades in the hopes of meeting the needs of the community as a 21st century library. At a public meeting Sept. 14 at the library, the board and architects from Patchogue-based BBS Architects & Engineers discussed options for upgrades and listened to input from the community. In addition to its annual operating budget, the volunteer organization, Friends of the Library, is seeking donations from the public to be able to afford the total cost of potential renovations.

“We want to figure out what you guys want to see from your library going forward, not just the next five years, but 10, to 15, to 30,” Library Director Tom Donlon said to residents in attendance during the meeting. “We’ve been doing a lot of research, a lot of work. You guys have had a lot of questions.”

According to the board’s presentation, goals of the eventual renovations will be to relocate the library’s teen center, which is currently across the street from the main building; establish a more functional meeting space than the current one in the library’s basement; provide visitors with access to more computers and other technology; and expand the use of existing space in the main building, among others.

Community members in attendance suggested issues they’d like to see addressed by the project. Some aligned with the board’s plans, including technology expansion and improvements, better use of existing library space and a larger area for group meetings. In addition, residents want to see better elevator access and expansion to connect the property at 205 East Main Street, which the library purchased in 2015.

“It was in good shape, and it lent itself to the history of Port Jeff, and we all know, Port Jeff, we love our history,” Donlon said of the historic house, which was built in 1812, according to the Port Jefferson Historical Society. “We love to honor it, we love to soak ourselves into it, we believe in it. Our best plan of action, not only for the library but for the village, was for restoration and preservation. So that’s the mode we’re getting into.”

The next step in the process will be to formulate a complete design plan to be presented to the community. That meeting is tentatively scheduled to take place in the coming weeks. For more information about the project or to contribute to fundraising efforts, visit www.portjefflibrary.org.

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Clean lines and an open feel – many home reno clients want those concepts to be expressed in their daily living. Photo courtesy of Setauket Kitchen & Bath

By Susan Risoli

Spring brings a feeling that all is fresh and new. For many homeowners, this is the season for freshening up their living spaces, with a renovation project or a new interior design. This spring some trends are emerging in the ways people want to enjoy their homes.

Denis Lynch, owner of Setauket Kitchen and Bath in Setauket, finds that clients expect to use color differently than in years past. Paul Rosen, owner of Paul A. Rosen Interior Design in Commack, agreed. Lynch said today’s kitchen designs often include “a little splash of color,” expressed in the color of the cabinets or in the color of the hood over the stove. Or the client might ask to make the kitchen island a different color from the rest of the room, “or maybe use color in an accent piece on a far wall.”

But the colors are “nothing too bold,” Lynch said. “People are going for muted colors now.” Rosen said that when it comes to kitchen cabinets, his clients have been leaning toward “light color wood, with glazes.” When it comes to wall paint colors, mushroom, taupe and very light shades of purple are popular now, Rosen noted. So is gray. “Don’t look at gray as being dark,” he advised. “Using multiple shades of gray, that’s very handsome.”

Many homeowners are paring down and embracing an uncluttered way of life, and their home design choices may reflect that. “If anything is trending, it’s that people are going a little bit more contemporary,” Rosen said. “They want very clean, straight, simple lines.” Lynch said he finds the same preference for a simple, clean look is making itself known when clients come in to discuss a new kitchen or bathroom. One way that is evident is “instead of frosted shower doors or shower curtains, they want clear glass doors,” he said. “It also makes the room seem bigger.”

There are also trends in the materials used in home renovation and decorating. An industrial feel, with stainless steel elements throughout the home, is growing in popularity, Rosen said. For the latest looks in countertops and vanities, “quartz has come a long way,” Lynch said. The material is actually a composite of ground natural quartz mixed with polymer resin, via a manufacturing process. “It used to look very fake, like plastic,” Lynch said. “Now it looks more like natural stone, even though it is a man-made product.”

Setauket Kitchen and Bath has been using mostly porcelain flooring, Lynch said, and what is “very popular now” is porcelain tile that resembles wood flooring.

Wallpaper is making a strong comeback, Rosen said. He thinks it’s because “wallpaper stays clean forever. And you can get patterns today that are just phenomenal.” Choosing wallpaper instead of paint, he said,” is a good way to get a nice, dramatic look.”

Some aspects of putting a home together are classic, regardless of trends. Rosen said some types of furniture — such as sectionals — will always be in vogue if the room can accommodate it. As for fabrics, he has found that cottons and linens never go out of style.

Another thing that doesn’t change is the way design professionals interact with their clients. Some people have strong ideas about their home projects. Others need more guidance. Lynch recalled one customer who came into his showroom with “an old glass soap dispenser and asked us to design a bathroom that would coordinate with it.” But other clients aren’t sure what they want. “As a full-service construction company and design center, we take the project from design to completion,” Lynch said. “We have designers on staff, who will talk them through the project.”

Something for interior design clients to remember is that “you have to bond with your decorator, like you’re going on a date with somebody,” Rosen said. He starts the relationship off on the right foot by interviewing a client, to find out what appeals to them about their home and what they would like to change. Decorators can keep the relationship harmonious, he advised, by understanding that each client has a budget to work with. “Nobody ever says to their decorator, ‘Here’s my checkbook. Spend all the money you want,’” Rosen said. “You have to be frank and honest about how much things are going to cost.”

Part of what his clients are paying for is that “I am the insurance package that helps you not to make a mistake” in home décor, Rosen said. Thanks to their specialized knowledge and skills, “Decorators can mix different patterns very cleverly, like putting a plaid and a stripe together.”

The fish church is undergoing renovations. Photo by Erika Karp

More than 10 years in the making and the plans to renovate Rocky Point’s Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church, known fondly as the fish church, are finally getting off the ground.

To signify the start of the massive, $1.5 million renovation to the parish hall, the church celebrated with a ground-breaking ceremony on June 14. Construction should begin in a week or so.

The original parish hall, located at the back of the church and constructed in 1972, will be mostly knocked down and replaced, with 83 percent of the hall going under new construction. The updated hall will offer large, flexible spaces that can be subdivided for multiple meetings, and high ceilings for indoor play and congregational activities.

A new roof and energy efficient windows will also be installed.

In addition, a second entrance will be constructed, which will eliminate congestion at the original entrance to the church, along with an improved kitchen and food pantry facility for the Invited INN Soup Kitchen that operates out of the church. Throughout the last 10 years, the congregation raised approximately $730,000 — almost half of the money — needed to fund the restorations.

“When I think of this new space, it’s not just designing a bigger space, it’s significant events that will take place,” Pastor Jeffrey Kolbo said. “I see support groups, bible studies, all benefiting from this new space.”

While the space is already used for Sunday school, youth programs and a meeting place for various organizations, Kolbo thinks additional community groups will be able to utilize it.

The current building is 6,658 square feet, and the addition will add 2,211 square feet. The new main room will seat approximately 200 people and will be about 3,000 square feet.

Carol Moor, who runs the Invited INN soup kitchen, is very excited about the new upgrades to the kitchen and pantry. She said the church has generously provided the space throughout the years.

“A new, more efficient and upgraded kitchen will be great, since we cook everything in-house, from scratch,” Moor said. “And a bigger space also means that we can now host more than one meal per week and feed more people in need.”

The soup kitchen currently feeds about 70 to 80 people. However, after the renovations, the space will be able to hold around 200 people. The updates will also provide additional storage space to hold food for the soup kitchen.