I want to say that my article wasn’t directed toward the overdevelopment group. It was more about NIMBYism that plagues Long Island, in general. I obviously don’t want to see Long Beach lined with skyscrapers, à la Miami Beach. I’m more of a smart development kind of guy. Personally, I would rather see more development near the LIRR and downtown, but I’ll save that for a different article.
So here is the other side of the coin. All really good points, I might add.
Sam Pinto via Email: “The new plans are actually worse for community than last ones. They are pretty much playing at Tetris game by moving the 3 stories from on top of the 2 outside towers to now create a third tower. Creating less “pass through”. They are also confusing people by talking “stories” but not included the FEMA or parking floors. So 9 stories is really 11 or 12, and 6 is really 8. Density wasn’t really improved on and a plan of this magnitude will still cripple the infrastructure.
Jimmy Hennessy via Facebook: “There’s one single question everyone should focus on, in order to be granted a variance the developer must show a hardship. What exactly is the “hardship”? The developer needs to make more money? Not happening. If there is not “hardship” they should be NO variance.
James Lynch via Facebook: An independent cost benefit analysis needs to be done, on this project and all like it. We don’t even know the value of this property nor the related costs to build this project . Benefit vs detriment, you cant claim a hardship if you don’t even own the property, why should the community give up its quality of life to benefit one entity.
Long Beach Neighbors Against Overdevelopment via Facebook: Our motto is, and will continue to be, “Develop, but don’t Overdevelop”. That site where the HALB project is being proposed is zoned for a certain height, a certain lot coverage, a certain density, and a certain side yard unobstructed. The developer’s new, revised proposal still GROSSLY violates these codes. The developer is currently proposing a project whose 2 towers are more than three times what is permitted, and whose middle tower is more than two times what is permitted. This new project has more than two times the permitted lot coverage, three times the permitted obstructed side yards, and has approximately two times the permitted density. The zoning codes were created for our protection, as well as for the benefit of the various neighborhoods they effect.
While we appreciate your opinion, and your thoughts on the matter, we don’t agree with your assessment of the situation. True, through the actions of our group, and the neighborhood in general, we were able to have the developer reduce the height of the towers from 189’ to 125’. Additionally, the developer did reduce the density of the project. However, when a developer starts with a project that is so ridiculously outlandish, reducing the project to something which is still dramatically out of character with the neighborhood and in violation of the building codes is still not acceptable.You ask “Honestly, what do you folks realistically think is appropriate for that lot? You can’t just stop all development because of a few lost views. Is there a water issue? Is there a sewer issue?” We will answer these questions. First, simply look at the numerous waterfront townhouses and condominiums along the boardwalk from Lindell Blvd & W Broadway to New York Ave & W Broadway. These are examples of responsible building which enhances, and does not hurt, the neighborhood. Second, yes, this will make the water issue in Long Beach even worse. If you live here, then ask yourself if there has been a dramatic increase in the frequency you have “brown water” running from your pipes over the past 10 years. Third, yes, this will make a sewer issue worse. The sewers and drainage in ground level homes, businesses and apartment are already significantly slower – an increase of units twice the number of what the property is zoned for will not help these issues. These are only some of the issues caused by this overdevelopment.
We expect the developer who buys that property to do so in order to make a profit. We are not opposed to the developer making a profit. However, we cannot, and will not defend or support a developer who overpays for a particular lot because of what they “think” they can build, or creates the alleged very hardship they now claim mandates the massive project.
We are meeting tomorrow at 7pm at Long Beach Catholic to provide more information. As always, we welcome your presence.