Residents plead with Huntington town board to take action against plans...

Residents plead with Huntington town board to take action against plans for Vineyard Bay Estates

Huntington Town Hall

By Rokah Sejour 

Overdevelopment was one of the main concerns throughout the meeting for several residents of the Town of Huntington who joined the Town Hall meeting on Tuesday, March 12, sharing their concerns on the plans to develop the Vineyard Bay Estates property, located at 78 Bay Ave. and 211 Vineyard Road, Halesite. 

“This is not a request, but a plea on behalf of a neighborhood, on behalf of the conservation of wildlife, and the history of Huntington,” said Karen Witkowski, a Huntington resident.

Residents worried that the aftermath of this project would lead to extensive traffic in the area, more parking needs and more exhaust in the air, in a space already limited to handling these increases.

“Both of the roads that I use to leave the neighborhood would be impacted by this because they both would be developed,” said Gillian Inglis Glaser, a new resident of Huntington Bay Village.

Glaser spoke on the lack of notifying the residents on the proposed development, having spoken on the restrictions that would be put on their community not just after but also during the construction process of this project. 

“I think that’s what we are looking for, transparency,” Glaser said. “In general, we need more information and transparency about the process and what’s happening.”

Other residents addressed that only a few members of the community received notification of the plans for development, with some expressing that even with the notification, there was a lack of transparency in the impact that this development would have on the community.

Construction for the development is expected to last at least two years, with the developers intending to build eight homes in the area.

There were further concerns about the outcome of the future on displaced wildlife. Some feared that wildlife would be pushed into the community, into residents’ homes and yards, after being displaced from their natural environment. One resident explained that this is already an issue, which he attributed to past developments.

The Nathan Hale Nature Preserve Committee has requested that the Town of Huntington favorably considers and records a motion to order the Planning Board to vacate its findings that the New York State Environmental Quality Review Act has been met with this subdivision. Furthermore, that there be no significant environmental impacts and the issuance of a negative declaration pursuant to the Planning Board’s review of the environmental assessment data and the regulations as set forth in the resolution filed with the Town Clerk’s office on Feb 6.

There is a call from NHNPC for the Planning Board to undertake a comprehensive assessment of environmental, wildlife, safety, traffic, flora, fauna, water and air issues associated with the development. 

The committee is requesting that the Town Board requires the Planning Board to instruct the developers to immediately stop any further development and create architectural renderings of the project, with detailed depictions of the proposed homes, as situated on the proposed sites, along with the true heights of the 200-foot-long walls that are calculated to be 10 feet high and possibly 20 feet high to hold back the slope. 

“There are countless reasons that this development should be halted,” said Denise Goodwin Pace, a 44-year resident of Huntington and a member of the Nathan Hale committee.

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