AvalonBay revises Huntington Sta. proposal

Lisa Tyson talks about a proposed Avalon Bay

Lisa Tyson talks about a proposed Avalon Bay affordable housing project at a Huntington town hall meeting. (Sept. 7, 2010) (Credit: Newsday / Thomas A. Ferrara)

AvalonBay Communities on Tuesday submitted a scaled-back proposal to build 379 units of multifamily housing in Huntington Station.

The plan, submitted to the Town of Huntington, complies with existing multifamily zoning codes, officials said.

The issue dominated public meetings and divided the community in the weeks leading up to a board vote in September, when an AvalonBay plan calling for 490 units was rejected.

Avalon officials said the density has been decreased to comply with the existing zoning code, which allows for 14.5 units per acre. Company officials said the revised Huntington Station density is identical to that at its other properties in Huntington: Avalon Court and Court North in Melville.

"We're excited that we have gotten to this point," AvalonBay Communities vice president Matthew Whalen said. "I heard a lot of people say if we were proposing to build another beautiful community like we did in Melville at that scale and density they would be fully supportive and that's what this proposal constitutes."

The new proposal calls for 303 units to be rental homes, with the remaining 76 to be sold. The mix of apartment homes would consist of 94 one-bedroom units, 181 two-bedroom units and 104 three-bedroom homes. The targeted 26.6-acre site is a half-mile from the Huntington Station Long Island Rail Road station.

Board member Mark Mayoka said he wants a moratorium on high-density housing in Huntington Station because he has "deep concerns" about the impact on the area's infrastructure.

"I think we need to focus our efforts on code enforcement, safety and bringing in business for economic development," Mayoka said. Board member Glenda Jackson, who has always supported an AvalonBay development, said she is pleased the company came back with a proposal that complies with current town code but is disappointed that some of the affordable housing units have been lost as a consequence.

Town Supervisor Frank Petrone and town board member Mark Cuthbertson said they were glad a new proposal has been submitted that complies with current zoning codes.

On Feb. 23, Whalen announced he planned a feasibility study of a less-dense project after Petrone, Cuthbertson and Jackson asked him to try again.

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