Zoning move cuts Lighthouse in half
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Some critics blamed the town for waiting too long to come out with what they claim is a weaker plan rather than saying no from the onset. “They took a proposal to build a world-class development and substituted it with a second-rate plan,” said William Biamonte, the town’s Democratic chairman. “This could be a model for elegant density and smart growth that preserves the suburban quality of life.”
Murray emphasized that coming up with an alternative vision rather than rejecting the Lighthouse project outright means that the process will not have to start again from square one. “This way we get to the end zone faster,” she said.
Councilman Gary Hudes, who represents East Meadow and Salisbury, explained that the town plan is the product of countless conversations with residents on how to develop the Coliseum property without affecting the character of the community. “I am out in the neighborhood every day, talking to the residents in our community,” Hudes said. “From delis to donut shops, residents have told me time and time again:
‘We want it developed, we want it improved, we want the Islanders, we want construction jobs and other jobs associated with the development. But ... it’s too big ... scale it down.’
“We have done just that to preserve the suburban character of the area,” Hudes added. “This zone provides for a community, not a city with skyscrapers.”