New fast-food eatery and law office on hold
ISLIP TOWN—At the Islip Town Planning Board meeting Thursday night, the board reserved decision on two separate applications—one seeking to develop a fast-food establishment on Fifth Avenue in Bay Shore, and the other to install a law office on Montauk Highway in West Islip.
The first applicant, Multibrands Nesconset Realty, sought a change of zone from Industrial 1 District to Business 3 District, along with a special permit to operate a fast-food restaurant—Pollo Campero—at 1631 Fifth Avenue (west side of Smithtown Avenue, 129 feet south of Union Street) in Bay Shore. The building size would be 2,753 square feet on 27,288 square feet of property.
Planning Commissioner Rich Zapolski said that the most significant issue is that the proposal would only provide 35 parking spaces instead of the required number of 87.
“For us to relax the code that much, we’d have to look for some property nearby that people can park at,” he said.
Each of the two residents who spoke at the hearing raised concerns about too much traffic on Fifth Avenue, particularly late at night when cars would line up for the drive-through.
“With fast-food applications, we always ask for a traffic study to make sure that it allows for safe turns,” said Zapolski. “We will probably be thinking about restricting their hours as well. We don’t like the idea of them being open until 2 a.m., especially along Fifth Avenue.”
The other application—submitted by attorney Gerard Glass—called for a change of zone from Residence A District to General Service T District in order to use the building at 1248 Montauk Highway in West Islip (southwest corner of Montauk Highway and Snedecor Avenue) for a law office with one rental apartment unit on the second floor. The two-story building is 2,867 square feet on a land area of 13,506 square feet, and had previously been used as a doctor’s office for years without town approval.
One resident who spoke about the application, Lisa Meehan, lives adjacent to the property on Seabreeze Lane. Meehan wanted assurance that an adequate buffer would be erected between her yard and the property.
“I really don’t want to look into somebody’s business in the backyard while my kids are playing,” said Meehan, who noted that the space was empty when she first bought her home. “Right now, our PVC fencing is there, but from my house you can see people coming and going in the parking lot. I just don’t think there’s enough of a buffer, and we would want some heavier planting to cover that.”
Zapolski said that the board is aiming to act accordingly and fill in the buffer space.
“Right now, there’s about an 8-foot landscape buffer between the parking area and her fence,” he said. “We’re going to look to double that and get it all planted.”
The next Islip Town Planning Board meeting will take place on Thursday, Nov. 5 at 6:30 p.m.
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