On Feb. 9, the town of Islip Planning Board met and heard applications for various sites in the Suffolk County News area.
The board held a public hearing for an application from Bay-Islip Associates. Bay-Islip Associates is requesting a change of zone from Business 1 to Business 3 for the vacant HSBC bank building located at 430 East Main Street in Bay Shore. The applicant is looking to put a Starbucks restaurant with a 13-car drive through in the location. The plan proposes a bypass lane next to the drive-through for cars that may need to exit the line. The Starbucks would be located next to a Northwell Health location and the applicant wants to put in 16 outdoor seats for Northwell employees and patrons to use during their breaks. The hours of operation of a typical Starbucks are 5 a.m. to 11 p.m. The proposed Starbucks would encompass 2,890 square feet. During the public hearing, residents who live nearby the site raised questions about the dumpster location, lighting, and noise from the drive-through speaker. Representatives for the applicant noted that the lighting would have to be dark-sky compliant as per town code and that the sound from the drive-through speaker is meant to project in a 10-foot radius. Board members said they would like an official decibel level for the drive-through speaker and also raised concerns about the site of the dumpster as it butts up against a brook. The board closed the hearing and reserved decision to let the applicant sort through the issues that were raised. If the board does end up approving the application, the applicant would still need a town board special permit for a fast-food restaurant pursuant to 68-302 G.
The board held a public hearing for an application from 301 West Main Street, LLC. The site is located on the North side of Main Street, (S.R 27A) between Sunset Road and Seafield Lane in Bay Shore (301 W. Main Street.) The applicant is requesting a change of zone from Residence B and Business 1 to all Business District and a planning board special permit for a mixed-use building pursuant to 68-257.1 G. Anthony Guardino, the lawyer representing 301 West Main Street, LLC, noted that he has been working on this property on and off for almost 15 years with the same developer.
“This site has been an eyesore in the community for many years,” Guardino said.
The buildings that once occupied the site have been demolished at the request of the town, and the site is partially paved with the remnants of the paving and concrete that was there from the prior uses. However, the site is overgrown with weeds. Guardino said the current proposal was a suggestion by the former planning commissioner Ron Meyer, who felt that this use was an appropriate one for the site. The proposed building on the site would be a three-story 17,594-square-foot building with 18 one-bedroom units on roughly half of the first floor and all of the second and third floor. The other 2,672 square feet on the first floor would be dedicated for retail or office space, Guardino said. Chairman of the planning board Edward Friedland said the application was a nonstarter for him because of the number of plans for new apartment complexes in Bay Shore. Most of the community members who spoke on the issue spoke against it. They acknowledged that the property has been an eyesore for many years, but that the plan doesn’t make sense and would add more congestion in the area. Many residents took issue with the height of the building and the size of the parking. After closing the public hearing, the board decided to reserve a decision to give the applicant time to respond and adjust to the concerns from the community and the board.
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