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Group hails Islip’s plan for affordable housing

A proposed town code amendment that would encourage builders to develop affordable and environmentally friendly housing in exchange for higher density received a positive reception at a public hearing Tuesday.

Two representatives from the Long Island Builders Institute hailed Islip as a leader in affordable housing development but added that the language of the code change should be tweaked.

Mitch Pally, chief executive of the institute, said that while the agency “strongly supports the concept, we have a few issues with regard to the definition of affordable housing” and the energy standard to be used for the code, among other issues.

No residents spoke for or against the proposed code change amendment.

Written comment can be submitted until Feb. 15, said Islip Planning Commissioner Dave Genaway.

The proposed code change would affect only the town’s Residence CA zoning district, the town’s primary zoning for non-age-restricted apartments, condominiums and town homes.

The change, if approved by the board, would allow developers who take advantage of the incentives to “reach maximum densities of up to 10 units per acre for town homes and 12 units per acre for apartments,” increased from six units per acre for town homes and nine units per acre for apartments.

Genaway said affordable housing is needed in Islip to keep young people in the area, fight Islandwide “brain drain,” and provide safe alternatives to illegal multifamily dwellings.

Such illegal dwellings are prevalent in northern Islip, said activist Renee Ortiz, a longtime Central Islip resident.


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