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July 15th - 21st, 2017

Regional Updates

Zyscovich Architects

For nearly forty years, Zyscovich Architects has strived to create projects with purpose, bringing new life and vibrancy to cityscapes through integrated urban planning, architecture and interior design. To this day, Zyscovich Architects has remained true to the original concept: design projects that have purpose and meaning. Since the firm's inception in 1977, the goal has always been to establish a company that can provide high-value services for design-specific issues while placing "social betterment" at the core of everything they do. 

Zyscovich Architects has designed the full spectrum of projects, from transportation facilities and airports to K-12 schools and universities, mixed-use commercial and public-private partnership developments to multi-family residential high rises and master plans for cities. 

"The project has been investigated from every possible vantage point and the Board believes that the Heartland development represents an opportunity for our Town. No other project in the Town's history has faced the scrutiny that has been imposed upon Heartland, and the part of that has been providing opportunities for public comment throughout the past few years." - Islip Town Supervisor Angie Carpenter

"We would like to thank the Islip Town Supervisor and the Town Board for all of their hard work and dedication in approving the application. We look forward to working with the Town to build this exciting development, which will set the standard as a place where both our young adults and empty nesters will be able to live, work and play in one place" - Heartland Developer Gerald Wolkoff

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Islip Approves Phase 1 of Heartland Town Square Project

In a move over 15 years in the making the Town of Islip has unanimously approved the first phase of the Heartland Town Square Development.

The first phase of this mega project will take place on 113 acres and will include 3,500 apartments, 626,000 square feet of office space, 560,000 square feet of retail space, and 215,000 square feet of public space.  Buildings will be restricted to 10 stories in height.  This represents approximately a third of the overall project and will need to be mostly completed before approval can be given for the next phase.

"The project has been investigated from every possible vantage point and the Board believes that the Heartland development represents an opportunity for our Town,” said Supervisor Angie Carpenter of the 5-0 vote.  “No other project in the Town's history has faced the scrutiny that has been imposed upon Heartland, and the part of that has been providing opportunities for public comment throughout the past few years."

The project, which enjoys support with the local Brentwood community, is the culmination of years of work by the father-son development team Gerald and David Wolkoff, who own Heartland Development Group.  The group will be responsible for $9 million in infrastructure spending and $3 million in payments to the town for processing and other services.  Any further expansion or rezoning will require them to reapply to the town.

"We would like to thank the Islip Town Supervisor and the Town Board for all of their hard work and dedication in approving the application,” said Gerald Wolkoff.  “We look forward to working with the Town to build this exciting development, which will set the standard as a place where both our young adults and empty nesters will be able to live, work and play in one place"

Over the 15 years of planning the project has had support from the Brentwood community, but received some opposition from regional interests. Vision Board and staff supported the project in multiple public hearings over many years along with local community members, but important questions like local jobs and the status of apprenticeship programs still need to be addressed. 

Congratulations to the Town of Islip Board, the developer and most importantly the Brentwood community for coming out and supporting the project consistently over many years.

You can read more on this project and its approval here, here, here, and here.

Downtown Redevelopment a Hot Topic at Hicksville Chamber Summerfest

Vision Long Island Board and staff were out this past weekend at the Hicksville Chamber of Commerce’s Annual Summerfest taking input on downtown Hicksville redevelopment.

As part of our efforts in the local downtown we helped to man the downtown revitalization informational table, which saw heavy traffic throughout the day.  Hundreds stopped by to talk about upcoming plans for the station area, the LIRR improvements and the potential for rezoning leading to new development.  Vision received a tremendous amount of positive feedback about the ongoing efforts by the train station, the proposed zoning and what can be done in the future.  Persistent concerns were raised about redevelopment areas outside of the train station area specifically a conceptual proposal on the Sears property.    

Elected and appointed officials stopping by included former NYS Senator Jack M. Martins, NYS Assemblyman Michael Montessano, Nassau Comptroller George Maragos, Former Nassau Deputy Comptroller Steve Labriola, Nassau Legislators, Rose Walker, Laura Schaefer, Arnie Drucker, Town of Oyster Bay Supervisor Joseph Saladino, Councilman Louis Imbroto, Thomas Hand, Village of Westbury Deputy Mayor William Wise and former Plainview School Board member Angel Cepeda.

Special thanks to the Hicksville Chamber and Lionel Chitty for organizing a great festival, Revitalization Committee members, including School Board President Phil Heckler, for donating their time, and Vision's Elissa Kyle for taking input from local residents.

Vision Long Island Visits Downtown Lynbrook

Vision Long Island has been hired to study the parking situation the Village of Lynbrook as it gears up to open the doors of a new Regal movie theater this upcoming holiday season. 

The original theater in the downtown was adjacent to a municipal lot, which will not be present on the site for the new one, which means a loss of 51 spaces.  However, the new theater will boast 171 fewer seats which will be coupled with tweaked parking rules during peak times.  Nearby parking for stores that are closed at night will also be looked at for possible space.

Two previous studies have been conducted during consideration and opening stages of construction for the theater.  Vision will examine those studies while conducting its own and combine the results while conducting outreach to help reassure local residents.  Conducting the study during the summer will also help due to it being a busier time of year and giving us an idea of peak conditions.

“We’re excited,” said Vision Long Island Director Eric Alexander. “It’s a community we haven’t worked in before and we know there’s been a lot of efforts through the years to bring the theater back. It is also good to see new businesses open on Atlantic Ave to compliment the movie theatre. Special thanks to the local residents, businesses and Village officials who have given us some great input to date.”

You can read more on this development here.

Glen Cove Summer Ferry Service Has Smooth Opening

In an effort to help counter expected delays and cancellations due to LIRR’s summer repair work, the City of Glen Cove hired a temporary ferry service for commuters.  The service is working out of the newly finished Garvies Point terminal and is honoring all valid LIRR tickets for ferry service.

The MTA announced and implemented the service within a month’s time, with Glen Cove using it as a trial run for a permanent ferry based out of the terminal.  The first day saw about 100 passengers board the two ferries at 6:10 and 6:35 AM before dropping them at Wall Street and 34th Street.  The ferries were escorted by Harbor Patrol, which will continue to do so throughout the summer.

“It exceeded our expectations,” Deputy Mayor Barbara Peebles said. “We’re very fortunate that we were ferry-ready, [and] that the governor and the MTA looked for a way to help our local commuters. I think it’s going to build very strongly over the next few weeks.”

Riders noted that the experience provided them with a smooth trip and great views while allowing them to circumvent the usual hustle and bustle of taking the trains.  “If they made the ferry permanent,” said Cecelia Blihar, of Glen Cove, “we would take it to go to the city rather than the trains.”

The City of Glen Cove plans to release a Request for Proposal for permanent ferry service in September and are looking to have 3 departing and returning services a day for five days a week.  They are also exploring the possibility of a recreational ferry to operate on weekends and at off-peak hours during the week.  Permanent ferry service after the summer would not be under MTA jurisdiction as the summer ferry is and may have price changes.

You can read more on this story here.

NYS Comptroller DiNapoli Releases Report Highlighting Local Government Reliance on Federal Aid

State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli has issued a report this week detailing the impact of federal aid on New York’s municipalities and school districts.  The report notes that, in the past, school districts outside New York City have received $4.7 billion in direct federal aid and the city itself has received $7 billion.

Reliance on federal aid can vary depending on location within the state.  Areas outside of NYC received $2.6 billion in aid, or 55% of total federal aid reported by local government.  School districts received $1.6 billion (33%), cities $274 million (6%), towns $198 million (4%), and villages $82 million (2%).  The amount of aid depended heavily on class of government with county government receiving the highest totals followed by NYC, NYC schools, other cities in the state, other school districts, and finally villages and towns.

"Local governments receive much-needed federal aid that supports our schools, fixes our roads and keeps our communities safe," said DiNapoli. "But potential policy changes in Washington could have a considerable impact on local government operations. In today's political climate, it's important for New Yorkers to get a sense of how much funding is at stake and what programs might be at risk."

You can read DiNapoli’s full report here, view an interactive map here, and access information for state and local government spending here.

Concern for Independent Living Cuts Ribbon on Concern Bergen in Brooklyn

Vision Long Island was out recently in Crown Heights Brooklyn at a Ribbon Cutting/Grand Opening Ceremony to celebrate the opening of Concern Bergen, a 90-unit supportive housing development built by Concern for Independent Living for persons with disabilities and families in need of affordable housing. Concern for Independent Living has previously won three Smart Growth Awards on Long Island for their redevelopments in N. Amityville, Riverhead and most recently Middle Island.

The former warehouse that once occupied the site was demolished in early 2014 to make way for a newly constructed 7-story building.  Concern Bergen offers an array of apartment sizes and amenities, including a computer room, exercise room, laundry facilities, community room and rooftop garden.

"This project is a shining example of Governor Cuomo's and New York State's commitment to providing high quality affordable and supportive housing to New Yorkers," said Ralph Fasano, Executive Director of Concern for Independent Living, Inc. "It is also a testament to Community Board 8 and their leadership for recognizing that the solution to homelessness and the need for temporary shelters is housing and supports that help people thrive in their communities."

"Concern Bergen is a project that we should all be proud of, and it speaks to the power that mission-driven investments in housing can have in transforming a community and helping those most in need," said Michael Skrebutenas, Senior Vice President and Regional Director at the Community Preservation Corporation. "This public-private collaboration has taken a vacant warehouse that blighted the neighborhood, and transformed this site into a vital resource of supportive and affordable housing that will serve the community for generations."

Touring the facility, speaking with the new residents and their neighbors you can see the positive contribution this project brings to the community. It is good to get outside Long Island and see the work that is being done by quality Long Island builders in cooperation with other local communities.

Congratulations to Ralph Fasano and the entire Concern team for another great project.

Weekly Summer Street Fairs in Downtowns Across Long Island

The downtowns of Patchogue and Riverhead will once again host evening street fairs on Thursdays during the summer, alternating week that the events are hosted. Bay Shore will also be holding bi-weekly street fairs on Wednesdays.

ALIVE AFTER FIVE - Patchogue will host their 16th annual summer street fair, which was a Smart Growth Award recipient. There will be  six stages of live music and entertainment, more than 90 craft & retail vendors, 11 food trucks, children's activities and amusements, a Chinese auction and much more! The events will be held on August 3rd, and August 17th, with a rain date of August 24th.

ALIVE ON 25 - Riverhead’s festival, modeled after the success of Patchogue’s annual event, includes a classic car show by the Peconic River, local wine and craft beer, free music, kids activates, street vendors, local restaurants and food trucks, and more.  The events will be held on July 27th, August 10th and August 24th, with a rain date of August 31st.

ALIVE BY THE BAY - Bay Shore will be hosting this event on Wednesday nights this summer on Main Street. There will be live music, indoor & outdoor dining, local art, vendors, food trucks, beer, activities, fun for the kids and much more. The events will be held on Wednesday nights from 5:30PM-9PM on July 26th, August 9th, and August 23rd. Facebook page.

SOUTHAMPTON ANTIQUES FAIR - Rogers Mansion, 17 Meeting House Lane, Southampton, 631-283-2494, An-tiques, furniture, jewelry, vintage clothing, glass, ceramics, artwork and collectibles. Mansion tours from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. ($4). Fee Free. Dates 9 a.m.-4 p.m. July 22.

HUNTINGTON INDEPENDENCE DAY - Colonial Arsenal Museum, 425 Park Ave., Huntington, 516-448-3097, Re-enactment of the 1776 events in the Town of Huntington. Musket and cannon drills, practice musket drills for children, period craft and cooking demon-strations. Tours of the restored Arsenal. Fee Free. Date Noon-5 p.m. July 16, Rain date: July 23.

MUSIC BY THE BAY - Marina One, 97 E. Riviera Dr., Mastic Beach, 631-399-6lll, Concert is open to the public; live band, bring lawn chairs, refresh-ments for sale, no coolers permitted. Fee Free, donations accepted. Date 6-10 p.m. July 22.

OUTDOOR ARTS AND CRAFT SHOW - Good Ground Park, 30 W. Montauk Hwy., Hampton Bays, 631-728-2211, Art-work and handcrafted items for sale. Fee Free. Dates 10 a.m.-5 p.m. July 22-23.

FEAST OF ST. ROCCO - Church of St. Rocco, 18 Third St., Glen Cove,, 516-676-2482. Rides, games, food, children's show on July 29. July 30 is the traditional procession of Saint Rocco after 10:15 a.m. Mass. Fee Free, $30 pay-one-price rides. Date 6-11 p.m. July 26-28, 3-11 p.m. July 29, 3-10 p.m. July 30.

OUR LADY OF MERCY FAMILY FESTIVAL - Our Lady of Mercy Church, 500 S. Oyster Bay Rd., Hicksville, 516-931-4351, Rides, games, food, live music, casino. Fee Free, $30 pay-one-price rides. Date 6-11 p.m. July 26-28, 5-11 p.m. July 29, 5-10 p.m. July 30.

BELLPORT DAY FESTIVAL - Bellport Village, on South Country Road, between Station Road and New Jersey Avenue,, 631-438-1713. Live music, dance, a bounce house, craft fair, art show, petting zoo, food. Fee Free. Date 11 a.m.-4 p.m. July 29.

LOBSTERFEST - Wharf House at Founder's Landing, Terry Lane at Hobart Road, Southold, 631-477-9752, Lobster or steak dinner, hot dogs and hamburgers for children (5-8 p.m.) live music until 9:30 p.m. and raffles; reserve. Fee $55 ($50 in advance), $7 for 12 and younger. Date 5 p.m. July 29.

COUNTRY FEST LONG ISLAND - Dorothy P. Flint Nassau County 4H Camp, 3186 Sound Ave., Riverhead, 631-482-5657, Live country music with more than 10 bands, vendors, carnival, monster truck rides, mechanical bull rides, pony rides, crafts, kids events, line dancing lessons. Fee $14, $20 2-day pass (e-tickets only), free 10 and younger, free parking; cash only. Dates 11 a.m.-9 p.m. July 29, 11 a.m.-7 p.m. July 30.

ANTIQUES, FINE ART AND CRAFTS FAIR - Southold Historical Society, 55200 Rte. 25 (Main Road and Maple Lane), Southold,, 631-734-6382. More than 40 vendors, antiques, fine arts, crafts, photography, jewelry, food; live music. Fee $5, free 12 and younger. Date 9 a.m.- 4 p.m. July 29; rain date: July 30.

2nd Annual "Summer Nights in the Park" Concert to be Held on August 3rd

The Kings Park Chamber of Commerce will be hosting our second annual "Summer Nights in the Park" free family-friendly summer concert.  We expect a huge turnout with attendees coming from all over Long Island.  Our headliner, Fleetwood Maxx, NYC's best Fleetwood Mac Tribute Band since 2008, and opening act, the Jon Divello Band, Modern Country Tribute Band, both have very large followings and will surely bring a crowd. 

The event will take place on Thursday, August 3, 2017 at 6:00 p.m, and will be located at Municipal Parking Lot, Main Street, Kings Park.

Suffolk County Presiding Officer DuWayne Gregory Presents Charting the Course Event August 8th, 2017

Folks should join us at the Civic Tech Suffolk Conference on Aug. 8, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Babylon Student Center at Suffolk County Community College in Selden. The conference is sponsored by Suffolk Presiding Officer DuWayne Gregory and will feature an array of business and government leaders. The event is free but registration is required.

The day kicks off with a keynote address from government technology industry expert Sid Burgess, a senior solutions consultant at Granicus, which specializes in digital civic tech. Then, a panel of experts from the technology, government and business discuss partnering government with technology to improve both efficiencies in municipal departments and access to constituent services for residents.

Breakout sessions cover cybersecurity, predictive analytics, business development and procurement, apps and gadgets, hardware and software, and using tech for smart growth and to connect with millennials. Vision's Director Eric Alexander and Board member Dr. Nathalia Rogers and Neal Lewis will be a part of the lineup along with many other LI business representatives like LISTnet’s Peter Goldsmith.

Check out the story in LI Business News here.

To RSVP, contact Christina DeLisi at (631) 853-6377 or email

Long Island Coalition for the Homeless to Host Supply Our Students and Back Pack Pirates Festival

The Supply Our Students Drive is hosted by the Long Island Coalition for the Homeless (LICH). Each year, they pack thousands of back packs with the school supplies collected through this drive. The back packs are distributed through a network of homeless shelters in late August.

In collaboration with Holiday Magic, LICH also hosts “Back Pack Pirates Summer Festival”,  a one-day summer camp experience for up to 450 children from homeless shelters.  In addition to an incredible camp experience and brand new back packs, they provide the children with new school clothing and shoes. They also collect bathing suits and towels so the kids attending the event can participate in water activities.

Every child deserves to start their school year with the tools they need to succeed. Please help LICH collect NEW school supplies to fill backpacks for children in need, or host a drive in your community, business, school, or office!  They provide you with collection boxes, informational flyers about the event, and will pick up the boxes. Drives are being conducted now through the week of August 1st.  Please let them know if you’re interested in conducting a drive!  

Host sites are listed on their website! or you can visit any of the TFCU Branches to make a donation!

You can also conduct a DRIVE for new (or very gently used) clothing and shoes/sneakers for school-aged children, bathing suits and towels – or gift cards to help them purchase those items. Donate online:

The Back Pack Pirates Festival is 100% to the families of the children who attend but it costs approximately $100 per child!  They cannot provide this once in a lifetime experience to the children without your help!

 You can make a donation online!

About LICH: The Long Island Coalition for the Homeless is a 501c3 non-profit organization based in Amityville, NY. Our mission is to eliminate homelessness on Long Island and improve the lives of Long Islanders who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.  
Please direct all questions to Ksusha Cascio at (631) 464-4314 x 123 or

Suffolk County to Provide Septic Improvement Grants

Starting July 1st, you may begin the process and submit your application for the Septic Improvement Program.

The Septic Improvement Program is available to qualified owners of residential property located within Suffolk County.

Grant funding, of up to $10,000, will be provided toward the purchase and installation of Suffolk County Department of Health Services approved Innovative and Alternative nitrogen removal onsite wastewater treatment system (I/A OWTS) and leaching structure, as well as toward attendant engineering and design services. An additional $1,000 may be available toward installation of Pressurized Shallow Drainfields for a maximum grant of up to $11,000. All other costs, including, but not limited to, costs above the authorized grant amount, irrigation repairs, electrical improvements unrelated to system installation or other improvements necessary for the installation are the responsibility of the property owner/applicant. Post-installation landscaping restoration is also the responsibility of the property owner/applicant.

Preferential consideration will be given to properties in environmentally sensitive areas.

Please note:

Submission of an application does not guarantee an award of a grant. The County reserves the right to change the terms and conditions of the Septic Improvement Program at any time. This program is highly competitive and applications will be prioritized by area and other eligibility requirements and will also be based upon the availability of funding.

In addition:

  1. Grant Awardees will be required to execute a grant agreement with the County of Suffolk.
  2. Grant Awardees must permit Suffolk County Septic Improvement Program representatives the right to enter onto the property to perform any site assessments related to the processing of applications.
  3. Information and documentation that is submitted with the application may be subject to independent verification by the County.

If you would like to speak to someone directly about the program and/or Grant Application, please call the Department of Health Services at 631-852-5811. Staff will be available to answer your questions Monday-Friday from 9am-5pm. You can also send an email to

National Endowment for the Arts Our Town Grant, due September 11th

The National Endowment for the Arts’ Our Town grant program supports creative placemaking projects that help to transform communities into lively, beautiful, and resilient places with arts at their core. This funding supports local efforts to enhance quality of life and opportunity for existing residents, increase creative activity, and create a distinct sense of place. Applications due September 11.

Social Justice Grant Opportunity Now Open

The Pop Culture Collaborative is now accepting applications for their 'Pop-Up' grants program. These rapid response grants are available on a rolling basis throughout the year for any individual, organization or company working to harness the power of pop culture to create just, authentic narratives of people of color, Muslims, immigrants and refugees through TV, movies, sports, music and all forms of entertainment and mass media.

The Collaborative is a new, multi-million dollar philanthropic resource created by Unbound Philanthropy, Nathan Cummings Foundation, Ford Foundation, The JPB Foundation, and General Service Foundation—all organizations committed to growing and experimenting with pop culture narrative strategies as powerful tools for change in the real world.

They have designed these grants to help leaders in justice movements, the arts, entertainment, advertising, academia, and technology respond nimbly to increasingly common assaults on pluralism and inclusion in our society. 

Grants range from $5,000 to $30,000, and projects must have an imminent time-hook or a project timeline that can be completed within a four-month time frame. Individuals with fiscal sponsorship, non-profit and for-profits are all eligible to apply. Projects should aim to advance social change and authentic narratives in popular culture for people of color, immigrants, refugees and Muslims.

You can find full 'Pop Up' Grant Guidelines and Application Information here, and can submit your idea here. Every idea will be considered, and applicants will be notified if the program wishes receive a formal proposal.

NYS Climate Smart Communities Grant Program Funding Available

Funding will be available for inventory, assessment, planning and implementation projects that advance the work of municipalities in addressing climate change. Priorities for the 2017 round include specific adaptation actions that reduce flood risk and increase preparedness for future extreme weather conditions, specific mitigation activities related to transportation and reduction of food waste, and specific Climate Smart Communities certification actions that advance municipal ability in the future to implement adaptation and mitigation projects in the identified implementation categories.

A municipal resolution from the lead applicant authorizing application submission and documenting the availability of local match in the event of grant award must be submitted at the time of application.

For general information and questions on the Climate Smart Communities Program, please contact the Office of Climate Change, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, Office of Climate Change, 625 Broadway, Albany, NY 12233, 518-402-8448,

Help Wanted

Intern with Vision Long Island!

Vision Long Island is looking for interns! Our staff likes to say we "wear many hats," and interns will have to do the same. Interns will assist with planning, design, outreach, event planning, writing, research, attending meetings, reporting, photography, video and more. Bring your unique skill set to the table! We are looking for energetic and conscientious individuals with an interest in urban/suburban planning from a bottom-up perspective. This is a valuable opportunity to work with great people and learn about the issues impacting Long Island. Strong writing skills a plus.

Pink Tie Launches First Charity Focused Gas Station on Long Island

Vision Long Island recently attended the grand opening of Pink Tie’s first Giv n’ Go gas station in Freeport.

These new gas stations are designed to give back to the community with a portion of all gas purchases going towards charities.  The company has pledged that one penny will be donated to local charities for every gallon pumped at a station.  The program will give individuals a chance an easy and passive way to raise funds through something they do normally in the course of their days anyways.

“If more people realized that giving back would not only grow their business but also make them feel good because of the positive impact they are making in their community, I think the world would be a better place,” said founder Mike Cave.  “This is a remarkable opportunity for people to give back and support local charities 1 gallon at a time from Long Island across America!”

Vision Long Island commends this Pink Tie Group and their backers 1st Equity Title, Rich Cave, Mike Cave and Ray Thomas for setting this groundbreaking approach in motion.

The first location is now open in Freeport at 300 West Merrick Road, with 7 more soon to be opened across Long Island.  You can check out locations here and view the full Giv n’ Go website here.

Smart Talk

Chris Kyle, Communications Director

Newsletter Contributors:
Eric Alexander, Director; Tawaun Weber, Assistant Director;
Elissa Kyle, Planning Director; Jon Siebert, Program Coordinator

We strive to provide continued quality publications like this every week. If you have any news or events that you would like to add to our newsletter, submit them to for consideration.

If you are interested in becoming a newsletter or news blast sponsor, please call the office at 631-261-0242 for rates and opportunities.

Vision Long Island
24 Woodbine Ave., Suite Two
Northport, NY 11768
Phone: 631-261-0242. Fax: 631-754-4452.

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