The Huntington Zoning Board of Appeals has granted variances to the master developer for Huntington Station to construct a 3-floor mixed-use building in the heart of the community.
Plainview based-Renaissance Downtowns has proposed the Gateway Plaza Development that is to feature retail space and restaurants on the first floor of the building on the east side of New York Avenue at Olive Street. The second and third floors will have 33 studio and 33 one-bedroom market-rate apartments.
“Now we have to submit the full site plan to the planning board and once we get through planning board we will be begin to work on construction documentation,” said Ryan Porter, Renaissance Downtowns’ vice president of planning and development. “Then hopefully we’re in a position to have all permits in place to break ground toward the end of this year or at the latest at the beginning of next year.”
Town officials in February denied Renaissance’s site plan application because it did not comply with several sections of town code.
Of the 10 issues that led to the denial, four were related to parking, including having insufficient parking; using a parking lot that will not be accessible during regular business hours and constructing a parking structure that, as proposed, is not allowed in the zoning district.
The variances give Renaissance an exemption to build the project as it was proposed despite not meeting town code.
In granting the zoning variances in late April, the board concluded the project would not produce any “undesirable change” in the character of the neighborhood or be a detriment to nearby properties.
Town Supervisor Frank Petrone said the zoning board approval is a milestone.
“This has been a process with Renaissance that we all signed on to and the community made a commitment to work with them, so out of the time and effort put in by Renaissance, the town and community, we have a project,” Petrone said. “If we are going to revitalize Huntington Station, we’re going to have to provide the correct development that will encourage continued revitalization and the community sees that and were very supportive.”
Renaissance officials are still waiting for approval variances for its Northridge project, a 6,200-square-foot building at the northeast corner of Northridge Street and New York Avenue. The 3-floor structure will include commercial use on the ground level, eight apartments on the second floor and eight apartments on the third floor.
Porter said that project is going through a State Environmental Quality Review Act review and once that’s completed, the zoning board will be able to make variance decisions. He expected the environmental review to be finished in the next two weeks.