Psych Center Demo Contract Awarded

Project expected to start mid-May.

A $6.4 million contract has been awarded to a Bloomington, Indiana company for the demolition of 15 abandoned buildings on the former Kings Park Psychiatric Hospital property.

The work, scheduled to begin mid-May, will be done by National Salvage and Service Corp., which presented the lowest bid on the project. The project is expected to be completed Nov. 2013.

A total of 20 bids were received on the project.

The project is expected to create around 65 jobs, including jobs for local subcontractors in areas such as rodent control, trucking and concrete restoration.

“I’m pleased that this spring will bring visible improvements in the safety and security risks at the Kings Park Psychiatric Center site,” said New York State Park Commissioner, Rose Harvey, in a statement. “Once we get this important first step underway, State Parks looks forward to continuing to work with our partners on the state level and in the community to further revitalize this site,” she said.

 The bid comes in well below the $15 million allocated to undertake the demolition project. Funding for the project comes from a $25 million state budget appropriation initiated in 2006 by State Sen. John Flanagan.

"The fact that the accepted bid was significantly lower than originally anticipated is an encouraging sign and I look forward to working with State Parks to use the remaining funds in the most effective and efficient way possible," said Flanagan.

"I am also eager to work with the parks administration and the contractor to make sure that the community's way of life is protected during the upcoming process and that every attempt to hire workers from the immediate area will be made," said Flanagan.

At a Nov. 2011 meeting, held by state parks officials, residents raised questions concerning air and water quality during the demolition. Officials at the meeting called the plan well thought out and safe.

Four of the buildings slated for demolition are located within the 153-acre Nissequogue River State Park, which was established in 2000. The other 11 buildings that will be removed are located on an additional 35 acres of the property that were transferred to the agency in 2006. Some of the structures slated for removal include the smokestack and other structures adjacent to the abandoned power plant.

Advocate for Nissequogue River State Park, Linda Henninger said the announcement was great news.

“I am excited that a responsible bid came in that low. It shows that their initial remediation estimates were out of whack,” she said.

In a study commissioned by the state back in 2010, the price of demolishing all 57 abandoned buildings and returning 368 acres to open space was $215 million.

Proponents of the park have long advocated for a master plan for the property, such as the one being developed for neighboring . According to state parks spokesperson, Peter Brancato, the focus for now is on safety.

"Right now we are not focusing on a master plan.We are just focusing on bringing down the buildings as safely as possible. Then we will determine what the next phases will be as far as demolition and renovation.

According to Brancato, there won't be a master plan until Nov. 2013 or later when the second phase of demolition has been completed.

"We need to get to a certain condition first, then we can determine next steps," he said.

“I am disappointed with the 2013 date for a master plan. We still have to move forward. There is still a lot more work ahead to make this a thriving park," said Henninger. "The State’s position on the timetable for the master plan is unacceptable and must be revisited."

Matt(easy like Sunday morning) March 09, 2012 at 09:52 PM
I would like to see a zombie movie filmed at the KPPC site called "Psych Center Zombies " everyone involved including Sen Flanagan all become zombies... fund production with the remaining budget- the NYS\Long island movie industry could use a stimulus why not have some fun.
Gil Harris March 10, 2012 at 03:35 AM
Matt,I don't like when folks think the hospital was a funny place. I worked there 35 years and folks like you think it was a weird place. Believe me it was only treated badly by society. We were the only family for many of the patients as some folks thought it was a horrible place. So just to let you and many folks know it was not a "funny farm", "nut house". I hated it when people called it that. So lets NOT make a comedy movie about it. It was a sad place for many and we cried when we lost a patient knowing it was going to Potter Field.
Joseph DeBella March 10, 2012 at 01:11 PM
The picture above shows a building next to Tiffany field where Kings Park Soccer club plays its home games. This presents a health hazard with airborne asbestos ans other contaminants what is the club doing or town doing to protect us!
Gil Harris March 10, 2012 at 02:51 PM
The buildings and tunnels that are still standing have been cleaned out of asbestos. The ones that were torn down or burned down long ago were just covered with dirt and grass seeds. That ground can never be used for anything except lawns.
J March 10, 2012 at 03:11 PM
Gil, I'm sure Matt didn't mean any disrespect to the former residents or employees. It was a great place and very much needed. The way the buildings have deteriorated and been vandalized make our imaginations run wild. You have to admit, it would make for an amazing movie set.- not that any one of us would like to deal with film crews or publicity.
Les Home March 10, 2012 at 10:19 PM
Gil Harris's info regarding asbestos in the remaining buildings is just wrong. Believe what you will regarding the rest of what he says.
Gil Harris March 11, 2012 at 09:46 AM
Les, thats okay, a lot of folks don't believe how things were when the hospital was open. My guess is you never had anything to do with it. I respect your option.
Stephanie Coiro March 12, 2012 at 06:24 PM
Wow, does anyone have any idea what will be built in place of the KPPC? This is big town news.
Vincent L. March 12, 2012 at 07:27 PM
They should certainly restore building 93, what a shame to waste such an incredible building - nothing is made like this anymore, which is why I love walking through the park. The place is one of the scariest at night...your imagination can run wild.
John from Kings Park March 12, 2012 at 09:27 PM
The building would need more work to than it would be worth in the end...
John from Kings Park March 12, 2012 at 09:36 PM
I love it! Here's the plot I've come up with : Tabloid TV producer & reporter complete with film crew come to KPPC to do a story on the "haunted" buildings but become trapped inside 93 with a couple dozen or so Zombies. The title? "Crazy House Zombies". In true Zombie movie fashion, no one gets out alive in the end... Nothing beats a good Zombie movie...
Gil Harris March 13, 2012 at 04:01 AM
It was sold once to a company to put housing, not sure of the spelling but called Ackreman Corp.. They backed out of it because of the cost to clean the land. I think the figure came to 21 million.That's when Pilgrim took over the running of the park. Now the NYS Parks Dept owns it, so nothing is in line for building anything, just making it more prettier by tearing buildings
Chris April 18, 2012 at 04:25 AM
Nothing is sacred anymore. This was the most spectacular of the mental hospitals of its time, most of the buildings are build very solid, and have and will stand the test of time. 93 has most of the windows broken out, but its solid concrete is almost perfect on every floor. It disgusts me that there isnt more of an effort to save some of Kings Park's history. The danger of Asbestos is highly overplayed, with only chronic inhalation exposure the problem. How does one clean it up? Use water, and scoup it up, cart it off to a landfill. It presents no danger when wet. (Chris from NJ, Engineer in training and Hazardous waste certified)
Chris April 18, 2012 at 04:27 AM
93 would be the one I'd pick, for its construction style and age. Let them tear down the newer buildings.
Chris April 18, 2012 at 04:28 AM
There is asbestos in all of the tunnels and i'm sure in most of the buildings still...


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