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Nesconset Residents Launch Petition to Fight New Garden Apartments

Nearly 600 virtual signatures have been gathered to petition Town of Smithtown to vote down a change of zoning for Story Book Homes.

Nesconset residents are rallying on the Internet in hopes of prevent a proposal to build 66 garden apartments off Lake Avenue. 

Nearly 600 signatures have been gathered via a Change.org petition asking Town of Smithtown officials to deny a change of zoning request by developers Story Book Homes Inc. in Nesconset. The proposed plans call for 66 garden apartments between Pierson Street and Heritage Place South off Lake Avenue. 

The online petition reads: 

We the residents of Nesconset, NY and the surrounding area vehemently oppose the zone change petition by Story Book homes (#2012-04) to construct 66 garden apartments in the area between Pierson St. and Heritage Place South off of Lake Avenue. This is CLEARLY not in keeping with the character and integrity of the distinctly single family home neighborhood. In addition to the detrimental impact that such density will have on this extremely congested corridor (Lake Avenue) this will create: instability within the Tackan Elementary school given a highly transient population that flexes either up or down without warning every school year (constraining resources), add highly intrusive ambient lighting from parking areas needed to accommodate up to 99 cars, significantly increase the noise levels for all adjacent single family homes, and require septic and waste water management facilities that are not in keeping with the infrastructure and aesthetic of the residential area.

Most importantly - A HIGH DENSITY RENTAL COMPLEX WILL HAVE SEVERE IMPACT ON ALREADY DAMAGED PROPERTY VALUES. Any purported tax benefit will be tremendously offset by the lowering of all surrounding home values. Support the currently in place and correct zoning. Represent your constituents, not the greed of one developer.

The petition was created by Nesconset resident John Rorick, who set the goal of reaching 700 signatures before the letter is presented to Smithtown's elected officials. 

One of the most widely expressed concerns about the projects has been the traffic. 

 "Traffic would be a nightmare, our schools even more crowded, and the community would greatly suffer due to this environmental nightmare," Nesconset resident Kevin Strebel wrote to Patch.  

Newsday reports roughly 200 Nesconset residents attending the Smithtown Planning Board's public hearing on the requested change of zoning. The majority of those who attended were against proposed one-bedroom apartments, which would be marketed to single people and young couples. 

Ronkonkoma attorney Fred Tantone, representing Story Book Homes, said monthly rent 775-square-feet apartments would rent for approximately $1,200 a month, according to Newsday.

Newsday also reported Smithtown's Planning Board chairman John Gee told Nesconset residents planning members would inspect the future 5.34-acre site before making a decision about the zoning change on June 21.

Read more on Newsday about the June 21 Planning Board Hearing on Story Book Homes. 

David H. July 26, 2012 at 09:52 PM
And I definitely agree with the comment by "robkoz" about that stop sign at Lake Ave. S and Gaynor Road. If the town wants to raise some extra income, please put a patrol car there and I guarantee they will catch at least 20 cars that blow through that stop sign daily.
+irish+ July 27, 2012 at 02:48 PM
UPDATE: As of yesterday, July, 26, the Planning Dept. says there will be NO FURTHER PUBLIC discussion at their meetings; the Aug. 1st agenda is allegedly ADJOURNED. The Town Clerk has received paperwork on the Story Book application; however, they do not yet have a recommendation (approve/deny) from the Planning Board. It's high time the Patch has finally given coverage to this story.
John Rorick July 27, 2012 at 04:47 PM
Regardless we will be in attendance at the August 1st and all other meetings with the Planning Board. This was adjourned at the last meeting and was still listed at the last minute as part of the Planning Board Discussion items. These are the non public record items discussed within the board at the end of the meeting touching upon various holdover questions and data that they are gathering as a part of their discussion. Next opportunity for a public hearing will not be until it is in front of the Town Board, if the it gets that far...my presumption is it will, even if the recommendation is denial of application.
Nesconset Dude July 29, 2012 at 05:10 PM
Over 700 signatures and counting. The opposition to this is massive. If this project is approved, you know there was funny business involved. I personally do not trust our town officials. I've heard that Mr. Hornberger is actually dating someone affiliated with the town so he has an "in". Keep showing up to these hearings, it has to be made clear that this zone change request will not be tolerated.
+irish+ July 30, 2012 at 04:52 PM
The parking aspect of this proposal is only 99 spaces for 66 units. As we live in a highly car-dependent neighborhood, the majority of units would need two spaces, plus additional spotss for visitors. In the worst-case scenario that such a disaster is approved, this is what will happen: Vehicles belonging to apartment residents and their guests, repairmen, etc. will end up parking in front of homes on Gaynor, Pierson, Lake Ave. itself and possibly Evelynne St. The residents will complain to the Town, which might say "Sorry, we sympathize but it's a public street"; OR offer relief by posting "No Parking" signs in front of the existing homes. Result: The homeowners won't be able to park in front of their own homes, and neither will their guests. When homeowners want to have company, there is no place for their own guests to park. (Unlike the Hornberger residences, these homes do not have huge driveways. ) In addition, once an apartment complex of any size is introduced into our neighborhood, it would pave the way for even more apartment construction. And there goes the neighborhood.....

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