When the Forest Hills Sizzler, the last in the northeast, closed down in 2015, it left more than just an absence of buffet-style home-cooking and chargrilled steak. Residents said it lowered the quality of life in the neighborhood.
Now after being empty for almost four years, the Sizzler at 100-27 Metropolitan Ave. will be replaced by a supermarket.
New Department of Buildings filings, approved on May 30, propose renovations to the existing building, with new finishes, partitions and a new certificate of occupancy, but do not include any major changes to the building itself.
The property’s current commercial zoning typically grocery stores, restaurants and beauty parlors, so the property owner will be able to make the changes as-of-right. It also indicates that the new supermarket will have 22 designated parking spaces.
Neighbors have complained that the closure of Sizzler in 2015 led to a decrease in their quality of life as the result of homeless people camping out in the parking lot, according to district manager Frank Gulluscio.
“We’re happy it’s getting cleaned up and happy that there’s something in there we’ll hopefully like,” said Gulluscio.
As to what that grocery store will actually be, “that’s the question of the day,” Gulluscio said, noting that the building owner has not had to go through the community board to make the proposed changes.
“At the end of the day, I hope they do reach out to us as a good neighbor,” he said.
While the developer on the DOB filing Peter Bivona declined to identify the kind of grocery store that would be moving, the application lists the business’s name as Metropolitan Food Court.