More than a year after acquiring the site of a former Cerro Wire plant in Syosset from rival developer Taubman Centers Inc., Simon Property Group has unveiled its plan for a 90-acre town center development that combines residential and commercial elements.
Simon, of Indianapolis, Indiana, one of the nation's largest developers and owners of shopping malls, along with partners Manhasset-based Castagna Realty Co. and the Albanese Organization of Garden City, plans to build a mixed-use development with 600 residential units and 650,000 square feet of commercial space. The commercial space includes 200,000 square feet of office space, two hotels and a host of storefronts and restaurants. The developers also plan to build a 30-acre park on the town's former landfill.
Charles Davis, senior vice president of development for Simon, said that the goal of the project is to build "something that really strengthens the economy around here" and "is going to be economically sustainable."
The developer group, formally Oyster Bay Development LLC, purchased the 90-acre property in two parts, first buying the 54-acre parcel adjacent to the site of Taubman's planned mall development in 2013.
In early 2014, Taubman announced that it had sold its 39-acre site to Simon.
Davis said a complete timeline of the project, which includes small to large town houses, cottages and flats, and excludes rental housing, is hard to determine. But he said the developers anticipate completing some office, hotel and park space before the end of the decade.
"We're not building the same house 600 times," Davis said. "The challenge with a project like this is that you just can't pick and choose the timing."
Desmond Ryan, executive director of the Association for a Better Long Island, a developer lobbying group, hailed the plan. "As we look to redevelop suburbia, this is the project that all others will be measured against," he said.
Ryan noted that the original proposed mall plan for the site faced stiff local opposition, and said the new plan "basically ends a 20-year regional nightmare."
The developers held two information sessions on the Syosset project this week, and say they plan to continue communicating with residents over the next few months before submitting their project application to the Town of Oyster Bay.