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Vision Update

Regional Updates

Community Updates

Upcoming Events

Help Wanted

Weekend Planner

Closing Words


This Week's Sponsor


“In addition to the many benefits of purchasing locally-grown produce and other market items, we hope this location will become a destination for families to spend their Sunday mornings and afternoons. With local commerce and dining establishments nearby, residents can plan their day around visiting the market.” - Oyster Bay Councilwoman Rebecca Alesia

This Week's Sponsor

Albanese & Albanese


Albanese & Albanese LLP is one of the region's preeminent full-service firms, providing clients with specialized and diverse legal services. With the belief that every client, regardless of the issue, deserves the very best representation, Albanese & Albanese has represented major financial institutions, liability and title insurance companies, developers, contractors, universities, publicly and privately held companies, entrepreneurs engaged in all aspects of business, and individuals. The firm's reputation for excellence derives from its commitment to deliver high quality legal services and individual attention while maintaining efficiency and cost-effectiveness.

Become a supporter of Smart Growth


Vision Long Island prides itself on having a broad range of supporters.  Become one today. A donation as small as $50 buys outreach materials to help a community build support for their vision. $500 sponsors an entire newsletter.  $5,000 makes you a lead sponsor of our Smart Growth Summit, buying 10 tickets and a key branding opportunity for your organization.
Your tax-deductible donation goes directly to Vision and lets you help strengthen efforts to put Smart Growth principles into action.

Vision Update

LIBN highlights Smart Growth Awards


Long Island Business News did a great special feature article on the 2010 Smart Growth Awards this week. Among highlighting the honorees, it quotes Vision's Eric Alexander: “We would hear, ‘No one wants mixed usage - this is Long Island, everyone wants a single-family home and three cars,’” Alexander said. “We were told no developer would propose a mixed-use project, new town center or downtown infill. To date, there are over 100 of these projects planned, approved or built on Long Island.”

Check out the article here!

Regional Updates

"Build a Better Burb" Narrows Down Finalists 

The "Build a Better Burb" competition, organized by the Rauch Foundation, has just narrowed down the finalists to 23 for the Long Island People’s Choice Awards. The “Burb” competition entails envisioning a future plan for certain communities to become vibrant and to thrive economically- to work together and find a solution for future growth and development on Long Island. First prize is $10,000 with $10,000 in additional prizes for the other finalists.Proposals or prototypes were submitted addressing affordable housing, mobility, workforce, public space, historic resources and transit-oriented development. Over 210 proposals from over 30 countries were submitted.


Today, there are 2.86 million people living on the Island. An overwhelmingly low percentage (10%) of that population is the younger generation. The lack of job opportunities, youth-friendly communities and affordable cost of living is causing the younger population to dwindle, threatening the future of Long Island. We must face the challenges of redirecting the growing inconsistency of age, race, ethnicity and income. 

We are very excited about the revealing of the finalist projects and the many ideas that Long Islanders have come up with for future development. Cast your vote beginning July 7th for the Long Island People’s Choice Award!

Visit here to check out the finalists, find more information and vote.

Cutbacks cause chaos on Long Island buses


This week, about 13,000 Long Islanders were forced to find an alternative route to work due to the MTA’s cuts to 11 bus lines throughout Long Island. The cut lines, as well as the seven other lines that will operate under reduced service are part of the MTA’s efforts to close an $800-million budget gap.On the chopping block were the N3, N17, N28, N53, N65, N66, N67, N87, N93, N94, and N95.

Despite being operated by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Long Island Bus is owned and subsidized by Nassau County. Last year, former Nassau County Executive Tom Suozzi decided to cut Nassau County’s funding to Long Island Bus drastically. The cuts are helping further Long Island Bus’ fiscal crises. Transit officials have said the cuts are necessary and could potential save $1.6 million a year. Ryan Lynch, a spokesperson for the nonprofit group Tri-State Transportation Campaign, said that “These are really the worst cuts to service since the 1970’s.” 

suozziMeanwhile, commuters are calling the cuts “total chaos." Many were unaware that their only means of transportation to work had been eliminated. Lynch went on to say that commuters are “going to have longer trips to and from work and home. In some cases there are going to be no alternatives for bus riders…and unfortunately, we don’t know what’s in their future.”

In a statement, Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano called the cuts “unconscionable,” especially given the MTA’s newly imposed payroll tax, which costs Nassau County 1.6 million this year. “They’re collecting more, and servicing less,” Mangano said.

New York Times gives TOD’s some love


The New York Times published an article last month about various Transit Oriented Development projects being built on Long Island. The article discusses the economy and its effect on building Smart Growth projects on Long Island. It highlights projects happening now in the communities of Babylon, Amityville, Hempstead Village, Rockville Centre, as well as the 2010 Smart Growth Award winning project, the Alexan at West Hempstead. 

Transit-oriented development is the creation of compact, walkable communities centered around high quality train systems. This makes it possible to live a higher quality life without complete dependence on a car for mobility and survival. 

Eric Alexander, Vision Long Island's executive director, was quoted- “After years of planning for transit-oriented development, projects of small and medium scale are getting built in our downtowns near transit stops.” He added, “These developments will satisfy a market niche that has been vastly underserved given the interest of Gen Xers, millennials and aging baby boomers in living near transit in downtowns.” 

The article details the Alexan at West Hempstead, which is set to start construction this summer. The project includes 150 one, two and three-bedroom upscale rental apartments built on a four-and-a-half-story structure around a central podium. Maria Rigopoulos, Vice President for Development for Trammell Crow Residential, developers of the project was also quoted in the article. “The last year of hiccups has been more from the financial markets,” she said. But the money problems followed 15 years of efforts to transform the site; among the highlights of that period were petitions by a local civic association and eminent-domain proceedings that shut down the 1960s Courtesy Hotel, long a symbol of downtown blight.” “It is happening,” Ms. Rigopoulos said. 

Matt Whalen,Vice President for Development of Avalon Bay-which is developing the Rockville Centre project- summed up the need for advancing TOD projects despite the economic climate. “These are very difficult times for the development community to invest,” But that has not altered his expectations for “a beautiful asset that will both address the need for our young professionals and residences close to mass transit — the future of Long Island." 

The full article can be viewed here.

Lighthouse decision in the works


The Town of Hempstead is set to announce its plans for the land surrounding the Nassau Coliseum. Details of the proposal are still unknown, though it is expected to be a scaled-down version of the Lighthouse project. The biggest unknown is whether or not the proposal will include plans for a casino. In what Hempstead Town Councilman Edward Ambrosino called “two competing proposals,” a sort of clash of the titans has developed - Nassau Coliseum style.

Developers Charles Wang and Scott Rechler’s mixed use $3.8-billion Lighthouse Project is butting heads with the Shinnecock Nation’s Casino plan spearheaded by Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano. Members of the tribe said recently that the Coliseum was one of the preferred locations for the casino. However, the Lighthouse Project and the Town of Hempstead already have a Development Plan Agreement and some believe Mangano’s opinion on the matter is a moot point. “If you had an agreed-upon deal, would the state get involved and approve a compact (for an Indian casino) that was counter to a local municipal decision?” said Vision's Eric Alexander in Newsday.

Developer Charles Wang, who originally designed the project some seven years ago, hasn’t talked publicly about the project in months. Instead, he left this simple message on the website for the Lighthouse Project:

As the Lighthouse Development Group currently awaits Town of Hempstead Supervisor Kate Murray's vision for the proposed site and the future of the New York Islanders, we would like to thank all of our supporters for their patience through this very long and excruciatingly painful process. Since 2003, the Lighthouse organization has invested over $19 million, produced over 10,000 pages of environmental documentation from top tier consultants, and presented at almost 220 community meetings. You would think this would be enough for the Town to decide on our project that will bring 75,000 jobs during the construction period, 19,000 permanent jobs and more than $71 million in annual tax revenue. We know these jobs and tax dollars are badly needed. Thank you again for all your support and patience. We anxiously await Supervisor Murray's decision.

Hempstead is currently consulting with engineering firm Frederick P. Clark Associates to come up with a zoning plan for the 77 acres of county-owned land. Spokesman Michael Deery said the Town and its consultants are “working aggressively” to finish the plan. An announcement could be made any day. 

Home Energy Audits available for consumers

bikesThe Sustainability Institute at Molloy College published a Green Paper earlier this month about new Home Energy Retrofits available to homeowners in New York State. Under New York State General Municipal Law, Article 5-L Municipal Sustainable Energy Loan Program defines energy audits as “a formal evaluation of the energy consumption of a permanent building or structural improvement to a real property, conducted by a contractor certified by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), or certified by a certifying entity approved by the authority for the purpose of identifying appropriate energy efficiency improvements that could be made to the property.”

The Home Energy Audits are conducted through the Residential Energy Services Network (RESNET) Home Energy Rating System (HERS). This rating system is utilized by the EnergyStar Homes program, developed by the EPA and administered by NYSERDA and LIPA.

A proposed Home Star program, subject of U.S. Senate bill S. 3177, would allow Building Performance Institute (BPI) home audits to qualify for a $3,000 to $8,000 rebate. Contractors assessing the property must be BPI certified or RESNET accredited. Contractors can determine energy problems, goals and solutions to improving energy efficiency. Some of the diagnostics performed include blower door tests, combustion appliance testing and duct testing. Thermographic imaging inspections are also recommended.

After a comprehensive home energy audit, a qualified professional (BPI or RESNET) assesses the building and recommends improvements to increase energy efficiency. The Department of Energy’s website offers steps to hiring a contractor to conduct a home energy audit on buildings.

Read the Sustinability Institute’s report, Establishing a Home Energy Audit Standard, Adopting Best Practices, Providing Consumer Protections here.

Pedestrian travel shaping up


According to the National Bicycling and Walking Study,conducted by the U.S. Department of Transportation, Americans has been taking advantage of their bicycles and running shoes: human-powered transportation has increased by 25% since 2001. Pedestrian and Bicycling fatalities and injuries have also shown a 14.7% decrease over the past 15 years and pedestrian fatalities decreased by 17.8%. The challenging goal of planning and promoting pedestrian friendly roadways entails the partnerships of agencies, local government, politicians, engineers, planners and advocates.

Transportation is responsible for 80 percent of carbon monoxide emissions and about one third of carbon emissions. Not only does cycling and walking promote cleaner air by reducing harmful emissions from trips to the store, park, work, etc., but they allow commuters to save time by bypassing traffic. Not to mention it helps loosen our ties with the oil industry while saving money on those high gas prices. Non-motorized transportation encourages a healthier lifestyle through daily exercise while reducing the chance of heart disease, diabetes and stroke.

As a comparison, this video highlights rush-hour bike traffic in Ultrecht, Netherlands. The country’s major reliance on bicycles and mass transit for the morning and afternoon weekday commutes is enviable: 27% of Dutch population travel by bicycle, while America’s bike trips amount to 1%. Meanwhile, the average cost of health insurance in the Netherlands is 53% less than health insurance in America, which suggests that bicycle parking lots promote more healthy lifestyles than asphalt parking lots!

Providing areas with more travel alternatives helps create a sense of community and livability, a better environment for people to live and work. Google Maps now offers bike directions in most areas, and more info is available on cycling rules and travel routes here. A few small steps to work and back, a giant leap for Long Island communities!

Read the DOT study here.

Community Updates

Shop at local farmers markets this summer

If you're looking for a way to stimulate your local economy while getting fresh food and enjoying your local downtown area, check out a farmers market near you! Here are a few that are centered in or are very close to downtowns: 



farmersAMITYVILLE VILLAGE, 9/11 Memorial Park, Rt 110 South. Open Sat., 12 a.m. to noon, through November 6. Contact: Ethel Terry, 631-323-3653.

EAST HAMPTON, Nick & Toni's parking lot, 136 N. Main St. Open Fri., 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., through September 24. Contact: Kate Plumb, 631-725-9133.

HUNTINGTON, Elm Street parking lot, Main Street (Route 25A). Open Sun., 7 a.m. to noon; through November 21. Contact: Ethel Terry, 631-323-3653.

ISLIP, Town Hall parking lot on Montauk Highway, Route 27A. Open Sat., 7 a.m. to noon; through November 20. Contact: Ethel Terry, 631-323-3653.

MOUNT SINAI, North Shore Heritage Park, 633 Mt. Sinai-Coram Rd. Open Fridays, 2 pm to 6 pm. Contact Trish Graham 631-509-0882

MONTAUK, On the Green, center of Downtown Montauk. Open Thurs., 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.; through October 15. Contact: Laraine Creegan 631-668-2428

NORTHPORT, Northport Village Park, Main Street. Open Sat., 9 a.m. to 12 a.m.; June 19th through Mid Nov. Contact: Northport Chamber of Commerce 631-754-3905.

PATCHOGUE, 7-Eleven store parking lot, Montauk Highway west of Route 112. Open Fri., 7 a.m. to noon; through late November. Contact: Ethel Terry 631-323-3653.

PORT JEFFERSON, parking lot next to ferry, Route 25A. Open Thur., 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.; through Oct. 22. Contact: Ethel Terry 631-323-3653.
RIVERHEAD, downtown next to Atlantis Marine World Aquarium, Downtown. Open Thur., 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.; through November 18. Contact: Ethel Terry 631-323-3653.

SAG HARBOR, Breakwater Yacht Club parking lot, Bay & Burke Streets. Open Sat., 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.; through October 30. Contact Mary Woltz, 631-899-3445.

WESTHAMPTON BEACH, 85 Mill Road, Village Municipal parking. Open Sat., 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.; through November 21. Contact Elise Collins 631-288-1559.



GARDEN CITY, 101 County Seat Dr., Supreme Ct. Bldg. lot off Old Country Rd. Open Tues., 7 a.m. to 1p.m.; through Nov. 23. Contact: Ethel Terry 631-323-3653

GLEN COVE, Village Square. Open Sun., 7 a.m. to noon; through Nov. 21. Contact: Ethel Terry 631-323-3653

HEMPSTEAD VILLAGE, Christ Presbyterian Church, Fulton & Washington St., across from police station. Open Fri., 7 a.m. to noon; through Oct.. Contact: Ethel Terry 631-323-3653.

HICKSVILLE, Kennedy Memorial Park, between Jerusalem and Broadway, near the Hicksville Train Station. Sundays, June 27th-November 21st, 9am-2pm.

LOCUST VALLEY, Forest Avenue, across from post office. Open Sat., 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.; November 6. Contact: Ethel Terry 631-323-3653.

LONG BEACH, Kennedy Plaza at Long Beach City Hall, 1 West Chester St.. through Nov.. Contact: Bernadette Martin 631-678-5227

NEW HYDE PARK, Long Island Medical Center lot. Open Wed., 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.; through Mid Nov..  Contact: Ethel Terry 631-323-3653

PORT WASHINGTON, Town Dock, Main Street. Open Sat., 7 a.m. to noon; through Oct. 31. Contact: Grassroots Environmental Education, Patti Wood, 516-883-0887.

ROCKVILLE CENTRE, LIRR parking lot, corner of Sunrise Hwy & Long Beach Rd. Open Sun., 7 a.m. to noon; through Nov. 21. Contact: Ethel Terry 631-323-3653.

Grants Available

USDOT offering TIGER II grants


The US Department of Transportation is offereing $600 million in TIGER II planning grants. Pre-applications are due on July 16th and final applications must be received by August 23rd. They are offering a free webinar on June 15th from 1-2:30pm. Join Beth Osborne, USDOT Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy along with representatives of the Federal Highway Administration, Federal Transit Administration, Federal Railroad Administration and Maritime Administration as they discuss the program, selection criteria, evaluations, and application process for TIGER II Planning Grants. If USDOT and HUD move forward with a joint solicitation, a representative from the U.S. Department of Housing and Community Development will join this presentation.

For more information, visit the DOT's website here.

Help Wanted

Vision Long Island seeking interns for Fall 2010

logoVision Long Island is now seeking unpaid interns for Fall 2010. If you are interested in suburban/urban planning, community development, local government, or sustainability, consider working for us part time.

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, and more. Bring your unique skill set to the table! We are looking for energetic and conscientious individuals with an interest in suburban/urban planning from a bottom-up perspective. This is a valuable opportunity to work with great people in a small office environment and learn about the issues impacting Long Island. Strong writing skills a plus.

Note that hours, start date, and end date are all flexible. Although this is an unpaid position, we will gladly work with you to provide college credit and transportation reimbursement. We will also work with you to make sure you have a great experience that is tailored to your specific interests and skill set.

Individuals interested in learning more are encouraged to contact us at Please put "Internships for Fall 2010" in the subject heading. You are welcome to include a resume and/or letter, and please indicate if you are available in the Spring, Summer, or both.


Weekend Planner


This Friday, July 2nd from 5-9 p.m., Downtown Patchogue will be holding the first night of it's 9th Annual Free Summer Street Fair Concert series, Alive After Five. Includes 5 stages of live music and other entertainment, including Blue Point and BrickHouse Breweries, vendors, merchants, service & non-profit organizations and nightly giveaways! Local restaurants will be offering indoor and outdoor seating as well as food, beverage and ice cream kiosks.

The event will continue every other Friday until August 13th. Visit for more information.

Glen Cove Downtown Sounds

The Glen Cove BID, in partnership with the City of Glen Cove, presents Downtown Sounds 2010, kicking off this Friday night. Every Friday night during July and August and selected Saturdays, the Glen Cove Village Square Plaza (intersection of School and Glen Streets) will feature with 12 outdoor performances by some of the New York area’s best musicians. Concerts begin at 7:00pm. 

There's a great summer lineup planned. This Friday night is Los Ciegos Del Barrio, a multi-genre Latin Music group from New York City, featuring Merengue, Bahata, Salsa, Bubia, Reggaeton and rock music in both English and Spanish.

The series is sponsored by National Grid and Bethpage Federal Credit Union. Visit their website for more info.

Closing Words

"All, too, will bear in mind this sacred principle, that though the will of the majority is in all cases to prevail, that will to be rightful must be reasonable; that the minority possess their equal rights, which equal law must protect, and to violate would be oppression." - Thomas Jefferson


Newsletter Editor: Michelle Dutchen, Director of Communications
Contributors: Eric Alexander, Executive Director; Tara Klein, Planning Coordinator;
Tawaun Weber, Assistant Director; Elissa Ward, Director of Sustainability; Juliana Roberts Dubovsky, Planning Consultant; Chris Kyle, Program Coordinator
Interns: Herb Glass, Chloe Johnson, Cody Miller

We strive to provide continued quality publications such as this each 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.

Contact Us

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

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