A proposed $69.8 million mixed-use apartment building in Hicksville could be the first under Oyster Bay’s new zoning code adopted this year to foster development around the Long Island Rail Road train station.
The Fieldstone at North Broadway would include 141 apartments, retail space and underground resident parking stretching from Newbridge Road to North Broadway, north of West John Street. The four-story, 240,000-square-foot building would also include a courtyard.
Developer Robert DiNoto, who is planning the project with partner Paul Posillico, said they had been looking at several sites around the train station to develop with the expectation that other multifamily developments would also be built in the area as part of the long-term Hicksville revitalization effort. The transformation of the area around Hicksville’s train station has been discussed for more than a decade, but DiNoto said this time around "I had a feeling it was actually going to happen."
"That’s what these [Transit Oriented Development] projects do, especially on larger scale," DiNoto said in an interview. "When all of a sudden you have 500 apartments come into an area, it creates a downtown where one hasn’t existed."
The Nassau County Industrial Development Agency last month gave preliminary approval to the project, which, according to the project’s application, is seeking nearly $3 million in sales and mortgage tax breaks as well as a 20-year Payment In Lieu of Taxes agreement to lower property taxes by an amount yet to be determined. The application says that 10% of the units will be set aside as affordable.
The apartments would be built on a site assembled from three adjacent properties. DiNoto said his company expects to close on the properties this year, demolish the existing structures and begin renting apartments in October 2023.
Under the new zoning for downtown Hicksville, which the Oyster Bay Town Board adopted at its Feb. 23 meeting, the project won’t require any variances, DiNoto said. Town Supervisor Joseph Saladino, speaking at that meeting, said the goal of the rezoning is to create "a vibrant and walkable downtown with new housing opportunities, restaurants, shops and office space."
DiNoto said the site plan has been submitted to Oyster Bay for approval.
The developer is moving ahead even as a larger planned development, Seritage Growth Properties’ Heritage Village, to the north has been put on hold. That project is expected to create 425 apartments as well as commercial space on the former Sears site. A Seritage spokesman said the company is refining its plans for Hicksville.
"We’re excited about it," Eric Alexander, director of Vision Long Island, a nonprofit that has advocated for transit-oriented development, said of the Fieldstone project. "It really kind of cleans up that corner and it is a good entranceway to the train station area, the heart of the downtown."
Alexander said investments like the Fieldstone at North Broadway and others expected over the next decade are going to transform the area.
"It does exactly what the community wanted — remove blighted properties," Alexander said. The new development "just cleans up the whole area," he said.
FIELDSTONE AT NORTH BROADWAY
10% set aside as affordable
250,000 square feet
$69.8M total cost
Source: Fieldstone at North Broadway application to Nassau County Industrial Development Agency