Apartment Code Change Weighed By Supervisor

  Supervisor Chad Lupinacci said town planners are considering changes to current zoning laws that allow construction of apartments over commercial businesses, as seen in this building at the corner of New York and Gibson avenues in Huntington village.   (Long Islander News photo/Andrew Wroblewski)

Supervisor Chad Lupinacci said town planners are considering changes to current zoning laws that allow construction of apartments over commercial businesses, as seen in this building at the corner of New York and Gibson avenues in Huntington village. (Long Islander News photo/Andrew Wroblewski)

By Connor Beach
cbeach@longislandergroup.com

Huntington Supervisor Chad Lupinacci is exploring potential changes to the existing town code that allows residential apartments to be built over commercial uses.

Established in 2006, the town’s C-6 zoning classification was implemented to allow for the construction of mixed-use buildings “where a permitted commercial use occupies the ground floor and a residential use occupies space on upper floors,” so long as the footprint of the upper floors does not exceed that of the ground floor.

Lupinacci said he first heard complaints about the 2006 zoning law changes while on the campaign trail last year, and has continued to listen to residents vent their frustration at many of this year’s town board meetings.

“I’ve heard many people speaking about it,” Lupinacci said in an interview Tuesday. “People have launched petition drives and been very vocal at town board meetings.”

Opponents of the C-6 zoning classification presented last month a nearly-1,000 signature petition calling for the repeal of the amendment to the town’s zoning law that allows apartments to be constructed above commercial buildings.

The petition stated that current town code allows for “unlimited apartments above ground floor commercial use,” something petition signers felt was a particular concern in Huntington village.

Lupinacci said the town’s planning department is currently reviewing the C-6 zoning classification and plans to submit later this week a report, potentially with recommended changes.

While the report had not yet been submitted as of deadline, Lupinacci did say planners were considering implementing “height requirements and other changes.”

Once the report is submitted, Lupinacci said, he plans to discuss the findings with his colleagues on the town board. A public hearing on the issue could be scheduled in the coming months, he added.

Lupinacci said, “We’re trying to come up with a plan that will preserve the historic character and charm of our town, while still being welcoming to new residents and businesses.”