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Hearing Set for New Avalon Plan

Company seeks rezoning to allow building of 379 units in Huntington Station.

The revived Avalon Bay plan to build a large number of homes in Huntington Station will come back for a hearing May 16 on a bid for rezoning.

 Avalon Bay last month submitted a new plan to have the 26-acre site on East Fifth Street rezoned from its current R-7 residence district classification, which would allow construction of 109 single-family homes, to R-3M garden apartment district,. That latter designation would permit the construction of the 379-unit, combination of rental and owner-occupied housing project.

Three members of the Town Board--Council members Glenda Jackson and Mark Cuthbertson, plus Town Supervisor Frank Petrone--invited Avalon to resubmit the proposal.

A larger plan was turned down by the board in September after considerable community opposition to a plan that also included a transit oriented district that many felt would mean too much high-density zoning to the area.

At Tuesday's meeting, a handful of speakers reiterated their opposition, citing crime, school overcrowding, the need to protect acquifers and traffic before the Town Board voted to set the public hearing.

Councilwoman Susan Berland said Tuesday that she voted for the hearing because she had supported public hearings on other contentious issues and thought the matter needed to be discussed.

 Mark Mayoka, Mark Cuthbertson and Susan Berland formed the majority on the Town Board that voted the first plan down in September.

Bobby Jaxx March 24, 2011 at 03:34 PM
Good points
Patched Out 2 March 24, 2011 at 04:39 PM
See what you seem to have a hard time accepting is that you and your group are not the only voice in HS or in the Town of Huntington for that matter. There were people who live in HS who gave their feedback as wanting the number of three bedrooms to remain the same. So Avalon had to take their input into consideration too when developing its new proposal. I think you have way too much focus on claiming that we cant every do anything because it will result in "more kids"! Again a BOE's responsibility is to educate the kids that come to them. They need to work with other leaders, both political and community leaders, for us all to figure out how we our going to fund our education system going forward. So, bottom line is that you dont stop building housing because BOE cant figure out how to do THEIR JOB.
Jen LaVertu March 24, 2011 at 04:46 PM
Thanks Bobby!
Jen LaVertu March 24, 2011 at 05:13 PM
Kim, I don't need to "accept" your view. It is an opinion. I am entitled to my opinion. You however border on abusive with your posts. Just because someone does not see things the same way does not mean their view is "wrong".
Clifford Sondock March 24, 2011 at 05:20 PM
Education and housing are services and products best delivered through the private sector. Security is a legitimate role of Government. Obviously, Government is not doing a satisfactory job producing security in Huntington Station. Therefore, the Government needs to relinqish its control over education and housing to the free market and to focus on security.
Jen LaVertu March 24, 2011 at 05:44 PM
http://www.bizjournals.com/albany/news/2011/03/09/69000-ny-home-loans-at-risk-of.html This article clearly shows we have 69,000 homes about to be foreclosed on. We don't need more housing. It really is as simple as that. We have problems with a school that still remains closed do to crime in the surrounding area. Crime that Cuthbertson has admitted is a problem and it still has not been adressed. Crime is seasonal. You cannot claim crime is down in the middle of a record snow fall setting winter. The problems we have still exist and have not been adressed. Not to mention the housing market is still breaking down.......there are so many homes available. We have no right, under these deterioating conditions to continue to add more density in an already crippled area of town.
Clifford Sondock March 24, 2011 at 06:57 PM
Jennifer, "we" have no right to prevent Avalon Bay or any property owner from building more housing on private property. The presumption that there are 69,000 homes in foreclosure has no affect on another's right to build more housing. If the market will not bear the new housing that Avalon Bay builds, Avalon Bay will suffer the consequences. The Town of Huntington and Suffolk County police need to focus their attention on security not housing.
S.J. Harlan March 24, 2011 at 07:17 PM
Let us get to the hub of the problem. If the land was to be totally isolated and no one on the land was going to need or utilize any Town resources, I would agree totally. They could build the Tower of Babel for all anyone would care. Once a community incorporates, some of that independence is surrendered when people issues overlap. If AV were to build it's own self-supported school, hire it's own firefighters, police, leadership, water, sewer, garbage, and road solutions, they could be their own island. Since there is a common throughput and shared resources, there is no absolute autonomy. Sorry but that is what happens when people join a community. If the zoning change was only to the current land they want to buy, I'd say go for it. If they were willing to pay a quarterly impact fee for any and all costs that exceeded the norm, I'd be in agreement. For example, if they indicate their taxes will cover "x" number of kids and that number is exceeded, bill them quarterly. If their community requires the Town to upgrade any infracture, their community AND THEY should cover it quarterly. What we have been seeing in past reports was that AV would low ball the impact, sweet talk the "estimated favorability to the community" and it was never based on factual, measurable data from their OWN historical reports. If anything, it impacted negatively to the community who was left holding the tax bag.
Frank H. March 24, 2011 at 07:20 PM
I think the Avalon Bay project for Huntington Station is a great idea. I only wish there were one bedrooms forsale.
Frank H. March 24, 2011 at 07:25 PM
A article from the new york times about young people wanting to live in a place like huntington. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/20/realestate/20Lizo.html?_r=1
S.J. Harlan March 24, 2011 at 07:27 PM
As a hat tip to Clifford, I totally agree that imposing popular control of private property is a very bad thing, and that free enterprise is the solution. We are seeing a lack of good stewardship but most of the leadership in our communities, but an attitude of entitlement -- which I personally reject strongly. That is why community and neighorhood government is preferred to centralized federal or state government. I would also say that I don't want to have someone build a crematorium next to my house just because they own the land. There is fall out, (sorry for my bad humor." Just like in senior communities who wish to set age, noise, and actitiviy restrictions to meet a majority of their residents, those things in Huntington Station are acceptable - called the VOTE. Paper, scissors, and rock -- if you want to change the agreed upon situation, you get consensus. AV wants to change the situation and incease the density. It has consequences financially to the community. If they are willing to be negative impactings to services by paying their own way, will contractually agree to reimbursement so as not to increase all other taxes, then most of the issues raised would go away.
Jen LaVertu March 24, 2011 at 07:38 PM
Francis~ Your too cute! That article indicates they are ALREADY living here. One of my good friends girlfriend is in the picture and I myself, posted this article on facebook a few days ago. There are MANY apartments along main street in downtown.
Janet B. March 24, 2011 at 07:39 PM
FH: I agree. With the housing crisis, there is a trend towards people avoiding home ownership. I hope Avalon works out.
S.J. Harlan March 24, 2011 at 07:41 PM
As for Jennifer's statement of existing homes going into forfeiture, that has an immediate and sometimes long term impact on Town revenue. It is a side bar issue when looking at new homes because we have documentation that AV did offer incentives to the Town and the TOWN LEADERS to push this through the first time. I wouldn't think round TWO would be any different. We all know how business gets done. Look at the housing issues now. Homes are depreciated for tax purpose, taxes go uncollected, people are displaced and do not stimulate the local businesses, cut down on discressionary spending, but always there is less revenue for those existing common services in place and already budgeted or priced. While somewhat separate topic, it all comes down to the single revenue stream. New buildings generate a temporary peak in employment but after the project is over and the siding is up, contractors don't camp out on the lawn and continue to provide services -- they go on to the next project or not. It is not a continuing or sustainable employment stream such as manufacturing. There is a reason they call it a building bubble.
Jen LaVertu March 24, 2011 at 07:42 PM
This was my favorite part of the article!!!! Chris Whittelsey, 29, says he has paid $250,000 for a house in Huntington Station on which he hopes to close this week. His parents helped with the down payment, he said, but he will pay the rest. “I was getting too old to have roommates,” he said. “I’m excited to have a backyard, some space to call my own. That’s how it’s played out for me. yes people WANT apartments and WANT to live in a desirable area until they can afford a home. It's the American Dream! Just because I WANT to live in Lloyd Harbor and cannot afford it does not mean I get to. Young people these days need to get over their entitlement issues!
Katy March 24, 2011 at 07:46 PM
If the market will not bear the new housing that Avalon Bay builds, we the homeowners in the surrounding area will bear the consequences!! Avalon Bay can always bail out and sell to something less desirable or turn to government section 8 housing. Avalon Bay has nothing to lose, however we do as our home values will descrease.
Frank H. March 24, 2011 at 07:49 PM
The article also talks about how young people want to live near a train station.
Jen LaVertu March 24, 2011 at 07:50 PM
and I want a brand new car, but I cannot afford it, therefore I buy used. It comes down to entitlement issues. Do you know what that means Francis?
Janet B. March 24, 2011 at 08:00 PM
I don't see it as entitlement as much as people are unable to purchase homes. There are plenty of articles lately saying the American Dream of homeownership is dead. People can't afford to buy, people owe more on their homes than they're worth. It's a sad state of affairs.
Frank H. March 24, 2011 at 08:01 PM
Just like how you don't Want the Avalon project. Also I would like to wish my good friend Chris Whittelsey good luck on his new house.
Jen LaVertu March 24, 2011 at 08:23 PM
Thats is not entitlement Francis. Me not wanting the project is my opinion. Someone thinking they deserve housing in an area they cannot afford is entitlement. The Amercian Dream is not over at all! Francis's article shows young people not only in beautiful safe apartments in downtown Huntington but also purchasing homes in Huntington Station! It is a sad state of affairs when more housing is being added to revitalize an area that already has a track record of showing that adding housing contributed to its dowfall to begin with. The issue of crime and school closings has still not been adressed. 1,422 people in the area around that proposed property signed a petition saying they do not want this project. 6 months later it's back? Janet~ I also hope the recession turns around soon. It really is a sad state of affairs.
Frank H. March 24, 2011 at 08:40 PM
Me wanting the project is my opinion.
S.J. Harlan March 24, 2011 at 08:56 PM
Not all opinions are equal just as no all people are equal. You have the right to be wrong.
S.J. Harlan March 24, 2011 at 08:57 PM
I want to live in a million dollar estate on the beach. We want what we want. We get what we can afford.
S.J. Harlan March 24, 2011 at 08:59 PM
The American Dream? Just what is that? It isn't home ownership or a guarantee. It is the opportunity to go as far a your talents and hardwork can take you. It is equal justice under the law. It is not home ownership.
S.J. Harlan March 24, 2011 at 09:00 PM
The figure out a way to have it built lawfully, under the current building zoning with no negative tax consequences to the Township. Then yo can have your opinion go from fantasy to reality.
Clifford Sondock March 25, 2011 at 05:02 PM
Jennifer, you have every right to express your opinion. However, the Government should have no power to violate the right to property of the subject property owner to build more housing. I further agree that more housing should able to be built in Cold Spring Harbor or Lloyd Harbor or wherever the market determines. The problem is with Government not fulfilling its proper roles of both security and providing adequate infrastructure to accommodate growth.
Clifford Sondock March 25, 2011 at 05:11 PM
The zoning regulations are so restrictive that most change requires some facit of permission from Government. So, in deed, only the politically expedient development and redevelopment will occur. The result is a static real estate market and, in turn, economic mallaise.
Clifford Sondock March 26, 2011 at 06:04 PM
Far too much energy is wasted on the Government Approval Process which impedes innovation and the synchronization of supply and demand and raises costs. The benefits to society of Government control over the real estate market does not justify the costs. People should be able to voice their opinions all they want but their voices should not influence Government to interfere with the reat estate market...let people's tastes and desires influence those developers who produce the homes, apartments, retail, offices and warehouses through the successes of their competing developments.
Clifford Sondock March 30, 2011 at 02:20 AM
Maybe. There is a correlation between Long Island's restrictive zoning and segregation. Huntington needs both Avalon Bay and a freer real estate market.

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