Nassau Expressway overpass could be named for Pete Sobol

Matthew Ferremi for Long Island Herald

June 17, 2021

Originally published in Long Island Herald on June 17, 2021.

A bill in the state legislature that would name a portion of the Nassau Expressway after longtime Inwood resident, businessman and civic organizer Pete Sobol is now one step closer to passing.

The bill (S.4651/A.6187,) was unanimously passed by the state senate and assembly in a vote on June 9.  It now heads to Gov. Cuomo’s desk for his signature. If signed, the bill would rename the overpass connecting Seagirt Boulevard and the Nassau Expressway as the “Peter V. Sobol Memorial Bridge.”

Sobol died in February at the age of 64. He was considered by many to be the unofficial mayor of Inwood. The bill was co-sponsored by State Sen. Todd Kaminsky and assemblywoman Melissa “Missy” Miller. Kaminsky said in a statement that Sobol dedicated his life to improving Inwood and the Five Towns. 

“Peter Sobol dedicated every fiber of his being to bettering Inwood, the Five Towns and the lives of its residents,” Kaminsky said. “Renaming a bridge on Route 878 is a fitting tribute to Pete and his lifetime of service to the community. While he may have departed, his legacy will continue to live on for generations.”

Miller said that Sobol was one of the most selfless, caring and generous people she has ever known. “I wish that we weren’t doing this, because it makes it all the more real that our beloved Pete Sobol is gone,” she said. “But I am honored that Senator Kaminsky and I are able to memorialize Pete by renaming a section of this roadway after him. The Peter V. Sobol Bridge is a wonderful acknowledgment of his work and will now serve as a permanent legacy to Pete.”

Executive Director of the Five Towns Community Center K. Brent Hill succeeded Sobol as executive director of the Community Center in 2019. Hill noted how Sobol was helpful to him during his transition to the new role.

“Pete Sobol embodied the spirit of Inwood and its surrounding communities and dedication to assisting those in need and building bridges amongst communities was second to none,” Hill said, “It’s only fitting that an overpass on 878 is to be named in his honor. He was a great guy and is sorely missed but we will continue his mission of service.” 

Inwood resident and founder of Gammy’s Pantry at the community center Sasha Young said that Sobol was a great mentor and friend to her over the years.

“Losing Peter suddenly has been felt deeply throughout the Five Towns and beyond,” Young said. “Renaming a bridge on Route 878 in Peter’s memory is a fitting way to begin to honor his many contributions toward making Inwood and the surrounding areas a better place. A great big thank you to Senator Kaminsky and Assemblywoman Miller for your work on this legislation, which will ensure that Peter’s legacy will live on.”