A lawsuit filed by opponents of a proposed Hess gas station in Commack caused the Smithtown Town Board to scuttle a public hearing Tuesday on expanding retail stores at filling stations.
The public hearing would have solicited comments on a proposed amendment of town zoning laws that limit the size of convenience stores at gas stations in certain business districts.
Town officials said they postponed the hearing because approving the zoning change would have interfered with a lawsuit seeking to overturn the town board’s approval earlier this year of a zoning change to allow the Hess gas station and a convenience store on Jericho Turnpike in Commack.
The zoning change was approved, 3-2.
Opponents of the Hess station said they filed the suit because they believe it would create traffic hazards. Supporters say the Hess station would eliminate one of the town’s most notorious eyesores by replacing a closed Shell station.
No date was set for a new public hearing.
Above: A view of the vacant lot which stands as the potential site of a new Hess gas station at the intersection of Jericho Turnpike and Harned Road in Commack. (Feb. 10, 2012)