Changes planned for Southside Hospital
ISLIP TOWN—At last Thursday’s Islip Town Planning Board meeting, the proposed new development on the grounds of the Northwell Southside Hospital campus were discussed. Although the planning board reserved decision on the item, questions about the two new structures for that site were answered.
The item on the agenda was for the northwest corner of East Main Street in Bay Shore and North Montgomery Avenue, which is to the east of the main hospital building. The applicant is requesting a change of zone from General Service C District, Business District, Business 1 District and Residence B District to Downtown Development District and a town board special permit for a hospital. Site-plan modifications are also a part of the application.
Attorney Eugene DeNicola, representing the applicant (Southside Hospital), explained that the zone change would make the total hospital complex with the planned additions compliant with the town’s DDD code, which currently does not include hospitals. He said part of the hospital’s master plan is to build a pavilion to the west of the main hospital building as well as a multi-level parking garage to the east. The hospital property on Main Street extends east to North Montgomery Avenue and north to Union Boulevard. He noted that the construction of the two additions would be accomplished by demolishing older existing buildings on the grounds.
“There are parking issues that need to be addressed,” DeNicola said, noting that parking has long been an issue for the hospital. He added that the new garage would absorb much of the on-street parking that now occurs.
The parking stall requirement for the hospital with new additions would be 1,324 spaces. DeNicola said adding the garage would actually bring the number of spaces to 1,804. The five-story building will accommodate 200 cars per level.
When one resident voiced concern about the amount of traffic and light pollution that might result on North Montgomery Avenue, an engineer working on the project noted that there would be limited access to that roadway from the garage between dusk and dawn, limiting the amount of light pollution from headlights.
The new 214,00-square-foot pavilion would house 90 critical care beds, surgical and treatment rooms and offices. The six-story structure facing Montauk Highway would be set back 134 feet from the road. Decorative landscaping and lighting would be part of the project. On the eastern side of the complex, landscaping and lighting will also be carried along North Montgomery Avenue to Union Boulevard along with enhanced walkways.
Sean Colgan from the town’s planning department asked if any improvements would be part of the plan for the park-like area with a pond to the west of the complex. After DeNicola conferred with several individuals in the audience, he noted, “We have made no such commitments.”
The board reserved decision. The next planning board meeting will be held on Thursday, Nov. 1.
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