Town of Oyster Bay officials and developer Michael Dubb have agreed to extend a 30-day deadline for the town to take the next step in the environmental review process for a controversial development in Plainview.

Town Supervisor John Venditto has asked for the developer, who operates under the name Beechwood Organization, to reduce the density of the proposed project, increase open space and increase the amount of senior housing. The development would be built on a roughly triangular piece of land bound by Round Swamp and Old Country roads. Dubb has said he was willing to consider Venditto's requests.

Under the state's environmental review process the town was supposed to issue a formal statement -- called a findings statement -- that indicates whether the proposal sufficiently addressed any environmental or legal concerns within 30 days of the final environmental impact statement's filing on Feb. 3. A spokesman for the state Department of Environmental Conservation said the deadline for the findings statement could be extended if both parties agreed.

Under the current proposal, the developer would build 792 units of housing, a number that was reduced from an earlier proposal for 890 units. The developer is seeking zoning changes and the removal of restrictive covenants in order to build the project on a portion of 143.3 acres of land.

advertisement | advertise on newsday

About a dozen speakers at last week's Oyster Bay town board meeting appeared to be evenly split on whether the project should go ahead as proposed or not. Proponents argued it would bring needed housing to the area while opponents said the project should be dramatically scaled down to lessen its impact on the surrounding community.

Town commissioner of planning and development, Frederick Ippolito, said last week the town and developer were close to reaching an agreement.