Smart Growth Awards Update

Eric Alexander
Office: (631) 261-0242
Cell: (631) 804-9128

June 23, 2009

2009 Smart Growth Awards
Placemaking for Long Island
Crest Hollow Country Club, Woodbury, NY
Friday, June 19, 2009, 11:30am-2:00pm

Vision Long Island hosted the 2009 Smart Growth Awards on Friday, June 19th from 11:30am-2:00pm at the Crest Hollow Country Club in Woodbury, NY. The Awards celebrate the people, projects, and policies advancing Smart Growth on Long Island. Large attendance, fantastic honorees, a great MC in Adrienne Esposito, and a guest appearance by U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer all came together to make the event a huge success. 600 Long Islander business, community, government, educational, and environmental leaders attended the 8th annual Awards.


The event kicked off with a presentation with Vision’s Executive Director, Eric Alexander, who reviewed the organization’s milestones over the past year. Notable progress includes the recent Long Island Lobby Day, April’s Green Business & Infrastructure Summit, the work of the Long Island Smart Growth Working Group and partner organization Empire State Future, regional planning efforts such as Brookhaven 2030 and Long Island 2035, and community work in places such as Gordon Heights, Islandia, and many others. Master of Ceremonies Adrienne Esposito, Executive Director of Citizens Campaign for the Environment, presided over the rest of the event.

schumerUnited States Senator Charles “Chuck” Schumer made a big entrance for the luncheon’s keynote speech. After telling a few funny stories, New York’s senior senator dove into the importance of Smart Growth. Growth is inevitable, he explained, so we must grow in an intelligent, sustainable way. Schumer finished with three programs that Washington is looking at that will affect us in Long Island: the transportation bill reauthorization, sewer funding, and the Community Development Block Grant Program, focusing on downtowns and municipalities.

adrienneThis year’s eleven honorees represent the great progress that has been made toward achieving Smart Growth solutions for Long Island communities. In the face of economic challenges, the honorees have defied expectations by bringing real results to Long Island. The six projects honored this year are either approved, in construction, or built; the two plans have the full support of the local municipality; and the three organizations/individuals have a long record of accomplishment with concrete deliverables. Vision Long Island intentionally chose honorees that did not just have a vision, but have realized these plans in real time. These eleven honorees were chosen out of nearly fifty submissions received this year.

Each of the winners were featured in video interviews. The honorees included:

Stakeholder Participation: Lori Baldassare for the Mount Sinai Heritage Center. Lori Baldassare helped lead the charge to build the Mount Sinai Heritage Center, a successful new community center and park located at the site of a planned Home Depot. She demonstrated an exceptional use of stakeholder participation in the planning of the community facility and grounds in order to build something truly beneficial for the community.

Revitalizing Communities: Trammell Crow Residential for the Alexan @ West Hempstead. The Alexan @ West Hempstead will be a much-needed rental housing building, located at the site of the Courtesy Hotel—which the community has long considered a drug and crime-ridden blight. Alexan is strategically located adjacent to the West Hempstead LIRR station. It will serve as a central piece of revitalization plans for the area.


Preserving Open Space: Lisa Ott of the North Shore Land Alliance. Lisa Ott is being honored for her efforts to pass environmental bond resolutions in multiple municipalities in Nassau and Suffolk. She has done exceptional work with open space bonds in Nassau County and the Town of Huntington, helping to develop the bonds and later helping to allocate the funds. Ms. Ott has helped both counties preserve over 600 acres of land.


Mix of Uses: TRITEC for New Village in Patchogue. TRITEC’s redevelopment plan in the heart of downtown Patchogue will include office, retail, mixed-income housing, public space, and a hotel. The 4.87-acre site will help revitalize an area that has been depressed for many years, using Smart Growth principles to enliven the neighborhood.



Encouraging Walkability: Kingdom Family Holdings for the Marquis at Mineola. The Marquis at Mineola is a multifamily residential project in downtown Mineola. The project incorporates progressive design elements combined with a strategic location in downtown Mineola to encourage walking. The project’s features align with the Village of Mineola’s Master Plan, which emphasizes pedestrian facilities.  


Providing a Range of Housing Types: Nassau-Suffolk Coalition for the Homeless. The Nassau-Suffolk Coalition for the Homeless will be honored for their work in helping Long Island’s homeless find sufficient housing and support services. The group is a strong voice for an underrepresented demographic. Over the past 15 years, they have helped Long Island receive $91 million in federal HUD money for housing and services.


Creating a Sense of Place: Hon. Steve Flotteron and Hon. Phil Nolan of the Town of Islip for the Bay Shore Marina. Councilman Steve Flotteron and Supervisor Phil Nolan were strong voices for the reconstruction of the Bay Shore Marina. The revitalization of the 21-acre Marina has transformed a struggling section of the community into a thriving public space. Through exceptional local leadership, the community helped to create a place that works for everyone.


Compact Design: The Dennis Organization for Hawthorne Court. Hawthorne Court is a nearly-completed multifamily housing project in Valley Stream. The project provides walkable access to the Valley Stream train station, downtown shops and businesses, and more. Compact building design is an alternative to sprawl development, so that buildings are created with maximum resource efficiency and open space preservation.


Providing Transportation Options - The Town of Brookhaven and VHB for the Ronkonkoma Hub. The Ronkonkoma Hub is a redevelopment plan for the land around the Ronkonkoma LIRR station. The project will change zoning to allow for transit-oriented development and a variety of transportation options, including shuttle buses, train, taxis, walking, biking, and more.


Green Building & Energy Efficiency: The Village of Amityville for Village Hall. The Village of Amityville is receiving an award for their brand new Village Hall building, which was built with green standards. The building reduces energy consumption, minimizes environmental impact, and improves the long term health of Village employees. Amityville has shown a strong commitment to reducing the Village’s energy costs, saving taxpayer money, and improving the environment.

Providing Certainty: Glen Cove Mayor Ralph Suozzi for the Glen Cove Master Plan. Mayor Ralph Suozzi has made development decisions fair and predictable for the City of Glen Cove through its recently-adopted Master Plan. This plan successfully involves the community and lays the groundwork for multiple redevelopment projects from the waterfront to the downtown.


Sponsors included:

Lead Sponsor


Gold Sponsors




Elected Officials in attendance included:

US Senator Chuck Schumer, NYS Assembly Members Steve Englebright and Joseph Saladino; Michael Harrison of the Office of Governor David Paterson; Nassau County Legislator Wayne Wink; Suffolk County Legislators Kate Browning and John Kennedy; Brookhaven Town Supervisor Mark Lesko, Councilwoman Connie Kepert, and Councilwoman Kathy Walsh; Hempstead Town Councilman Ed Ambrosino and Councilwoman Dot Goosby, Town of Huntington Councilwoman Susan Berland, Councilman Stuart Besen, and Councilman Mark Cuthberson; Town of Islip Councilman Steve Flotteron; Town of Oyster Bay Supervisor John Venditto, Councilman Chris Coshignano; Town of Riverhead Supervisor Phil Cardinale, and Councilman James Wooten; City of Glen Cove Mayor Ralph Suozzi and Councilman Sean Dwyer; Village of Mineola Mayor Jack Martins; Village of Patchogue Mayor Paul Pontieri; and Village of Northport Trustee Henry Tobin.

For more information, visit visionlongisland.org or call (631) 261-0242. A copy of the event journal in .pdf form is available here.

The Smart Growth Awards is one of two primary Smart Growth events held on Long Island each year. On November 20, 2009, Smart Growth leaders will reconvene for the annual Smart Growth Summit, a full day of work sessions and talks designed to analyze Smart Growth issues on Long Island.



Newsletter Editor: Michelle Dutchen, Director of Communications
Contributors: Eric Alexander, Executive Director; Tara Klein, Planning Coordinator;
Tawaun Weber, Director of Special Projects; Elissa Ward, Director of Sustainability; Juliana Roberts Dubovsky, Planning Consultant

We strive to provide continued quality publications such as this each week. If you are interested in becoming a newsletter or news blast sponsor, please call the office at 631-261-0242 for rates and opportunities. If you have any news or events that you would like to add to our newsletter, submit them to info@visionlongisland.org for consideration.

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For more information about Vision Long Island, visit http://www.visionlongisland.org or contact us at:
24 Woodbine Ave. Suite One Northport, NY 11768. Phone: (631) 261-0242. Fax: (631) 754-4452.
Email: info@visionlongisland.org

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