Less than one month before Town of Smithtown officials are to continue a public hearing on a request to re-zone properties along Old Northport Road to heavy industry, civic association leaders have stepped forward offering a potential solution.
Bruce Ettenberg, president of Commack Civic Association, presented terms for a zoning compromise along Old Northport Road and the Kings Park Industrial area to Smithtown Town Board on Tuesday that he claims is satisfactory to both residents and business owners.
"The Commack Civic Association supports a change of zone in this area to light industry with outdoor storage, with the following caveats," Ettenberg said.
Among those caveats the Commack Civic Association proposed for the area were setback, noise and odor abatement measures to protect residents, limitations to truck traffic on Indian Head Road and enforcement measures to prevent claims of businesses being protected under grandfather clauses in the law.
Mike Rosato, Industrial Area chairman of the Kings Park Civic Association, asked the town to prohibit trucks from using Commack Road for transport to/from the industrial area.
These caveats aim to address the complaints of noise, odor and trucking traffic raised by then more than 250 residents who attended the June 6 public hearing held by Smithtown Planning Board over Carlson Associates and multiple business partners' application seeking
"As you already know, this area has been problematic for those Smithtown residents who reside near it. Residents have complained of odors, noise and 18-wheeler trucks using Town Line Road. These are major quality of life issues for Smithtown residents who look to town government for resolution," Ettenberg said.
While Smithtown officials recently restricted truck traffic on the east side of Town Line Road, it had not prevented trucking through the residential and school zones at the west side of the roadway, overseen by the Town of Huntington, which does not carry the same restrictions.
Rosato, speaking for Kings Park Civic Association, emphasized that Kings Park has asked for a zoning agreement for decades, believing it could carry several benefits for local communities.
"Several months ago, the Kings Park Civic Association membership voted to support a plan that would create a consistent zoning designation in the Kings Park industrial area. We believe such a plan will help encourage the proper redevelopment of this section of our community and eventually lead to an increase in our hamlet's tax base," he read from a letter.
The letter was dated Aug. 15, 2008.
Rosato urged Smithtown council members to enact the proposed zoning compromise claiming plan that makes sense and has the support of the majority of land owners in the area.
"This is a compromise that all parties should agree to for the best interest of our community," Rosato said.
Smithtown Town officials approved a measure at their July 17 meeting to hire an outside consultant to perform which includes areas in debate. The town has set aside more than $20,000 for the study.
The public hearing on Carlson Associates' request for a rezoning from R-43 and light industrial to heavy industrial is scheduled to continue Sept. 5.
Tell us, would you be willing to accept this zoning compromise of light industrial with outdoor storage? Tell us in the comments below.