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NYIT to sell off most of Central Islip campus

More than 100 acres of New York Institute of Technology property is in contract with developers. The land is near the hamlet's downtown, which is poised for an overhaul.

Most of the New York Institute of Technology

Most of the New York Institute of Technology campus in Central Islip is under contract for development. Photo Credit: James Carbone

Developers are in contract to build on more than 100 acres owned by the New York Institute of Technology in Central Islip, about a mile from where the hamlet is expected to draw nearly tens of millions of dollars for downtown investment.

NYIT, which has not operated a full college campus in Central Islip since 2005, is selling 106 acres, or most of its campus, said Jordan Thompson, the school’s deputy general counsel. NYIT will continue to operate a 7,000-square-foot health care center.

The college, which has no full-time students on campus, will also donate an 8.5-acre parcel and a building on the property on Eastview Drive to the Central Islip Union Free School District, officials said. NYIT operates other campuses in Old Westbury, Manhattan, Arkansas and in Vancouver, Canada.

NYIT is in contract with three developers, including one for 87 acres east of Carleton Avenue spanning Admission Drive, and 13 acres west of Carleton Avenue, Thompson said. NYIT is also in contract with a third developer, for 6 acres on Eastview Drive, he said. He would not disclose the terms of the contracts, but said the 87-acre property is under contract with an affiliate of Steel Equities based in Bethpage. Thompson declined speaking about what the three developers planned for their parcels.

“We have always maintained that we wanted to leave Central Islip in good hands,” Thompson said. “We have sought credible developers and want to leave Central Islip a better place when we are gone.”

Developers in contract with NYIT could not immediately be reached for comment.

Caroline Smith, an Islip Town spokeswoman, said officials have not received any applications for development at NYIT. But two of the parcels in contract are zoned for educational purposes and any other use will mandate approval by Islip officials, Smith said.

Construction has already started on former NYIT property.

Paul White, principal with Farrell Building Company based in Bridgehampton, said the company began construction last month on a 268-unit apartment complex on Carleton Avenue. The 30-acre property was last owned by NYIT in April 2018, Thompson said.

Farrell has closed on $65 million in financing for the complex. Central Islip was an ideal spot for the planned community, he said.

“There are a lot of jobs, and a lot of people looking for high-quality housing,” White said.

NYIT is not the only college campus on Long Island unloading its land. Tritec Real Estate Company, based in East Setauket, went into contract with Touro College last August to purchase 10 acres for a “multifamily complex” at the college’s Bay Shore campus. Deleware-based Mercury International LLC bought Dowling’s Oakdale campus in 2017 for $26.1 million.

Parts of the NYIT land are near the southernmost point of the Carleton Avenue corridor, which runs from Smith Street to the Long Island Rail Road station. The area has won a state grant for $9.7 million for revitalization. A committee is mulling pitches for how to spend the state funds and millions more in investment for proposals such as new housing, office space and sewers.

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