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Huntington Town Board OK's funding for $3.5M veterans housing development

Plans for the Columbia Terrace veterans affordable housing development proposed for Huntington Station have moved forward with town funding approval.

The Huntington Town Board has agreed to transfer $2 million from the Affordable Housing Trust and Agency Account to help fund the project on the west side of Lowndes Avenue, between Railroad and Columbia streets. Columbia Terrace is to have 14 units of owner-occupied, low-cost housing for military veterans

“It’s been a long time coming and it will be a lot of great housing opportunities for our veterans,” Town Supervisor Chad Lupinacci said.

Town documents show the project is expected to cost more than $3.5 million. Town officials said it received $1.56 million from Empire State Development in 2010, and has been approved for an extension. 

In 2014 the town board approved the transfer of $2 million from the trust to fund the Columbia Terrace Project. But the money was never transfered because it was contingent on having a contract signed with a company that would build the project, town officials said.

The transfer resolution was passed at the July 17 town board meeting 5-0. On the same day, the town’s Community Development Agency, which is made up of town board members, approved entering into a contract with Bayport-based Lipsky Enterprises, Inc. to build Columbia Terrace.

Lipsky was the low bidder on the project, according to town documents. The CDA director,  Leah Jefferson, will enter into a  construction contract with Lipsky for $2,940,704.

In 2014, the Suffolk County Legislature approved a bill to provide $250,000 to realign the intersection of Railroad Street and Lowndes Avenue to improve safety in the area that would include the veterans' housing, a hotel and artist lofts.

A spokeswoman from County Legis. William Spencer’s office said most of the traffic-calming work has been completed, with only work on sidewalks and the apron remaining.

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