A two-year protest by residents of a housing development slated for East Northport has triggered its delay.

The application for the 444-unit senior complex on the 37-acre site of the Oak Tree Dairy on Elwood Road has been pulled from review by the planning department at the developer's request, town Supervisor Frank Petrone said.

The developer, BK Elwood LLC, a subsidiary of The Engel Burman Group of Garden City, made the request in a letter to the town earlier this month.

Engel Burman president Jan Burman said that his company asked to revisit the application in order to hear more from the community. "We'd like to meet with the community and work with them to come up with a plan that could be acceptable to everybody," Burman said.

Petrone and Burman said they expect to meet with residents within the next few weeks. "I'm encouraged everyone will be sitting down; it's an important step and I'm hopeful," Petrone said. "Can we do some mixed type of use, can there be villas, town houses, some private homes?"

During the past couple of years, residents have shown up at town board meetings, written petitions and emailed town board members to register opposition to the proposed complex. They fear the traffic and the dense construction.

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MaryJane Mackey, a 49-year East Northport resident, said in anticipation of the coming meeting some area residents have met and come up with suggestions. "All I can do is hope we get something out of it, something we can live with, since it's our community," she said.

Dairy president Hari Singh, whose company is set to sell the property to the developer, said his associates appreciate that all sides are negotiating.

"It's a big project, and it's significant to the community," he said. "We're watching this and are hopeful and optimistic that the town, developer and the community will be able to come to a reasonable accommodation for everyone."