Currently a blighted waterfront parcel, 145 West Shore Road in Port Washington could soon be transformed into a new, 176-unit multifamily and mixed-use development with a publicly accessible marina, featuring 20-30 boat slips, and a 12-to-15-foot-wide, 700-foot-long promenade and a 300-foot-long pier.
Set to be developed by Southern Land Company (SLC), whose portfolio also includes multifamily projects at Wind Watch in Hauppauge and 555 Stewart Avenue in the Village of Garden City, 145 West Shore Road will emphasize environmental stewardship. Key to the project will be the multimillion-dollar cleanup of the property’s Hempstead Bay waterfront, which will allow the community to enjoy this particular part of the shoreline for the first time in more than 50 years. Previously only accessible by maritime commercial traffic, SLC intends to make the parcel accessible to the public and navigable by sea to local boaters.
Sustainability underscores the overall initiative, and 145 West Shore Road will be built to meet or exceed all energy conservation requirements, as determined by building and energy codes. Examples of SLC’s green building plans include, but are not limited to, the following:
- In order to control CO2 build-up, high-efficiency gas heating, water heating and cooktops will be used in lieu of electric energy.
- Highly reflective white TPO roofing will be installed to avoid heat absorption.
- Between 15 and 20 percent of all building components will be from recycled materials and packaging.
- Installation of a solar power system on the room will provide the majority of electric needs for common areas and the parking garage.
- Stormwater will be recaptured and used for irrigation.
- Seaward plant life will be added to help with the bay’s filtration.
SLC aims to be a long-term Port Washington partner, with plans in place to foster community growth in a viable way. In addition to the new waterfront, proposed local benefits include:
- Public access to a new educational viewing pier that will pay homage to some of the site’s history, speak to local marine and bird life, and be used for a variety of family-friendly events that are open to residents of the building and the public alike, like movie night
- A sewer main and pump to accommodate the proposed restaurant at North Hempstead Beach Park
- A shuttle running to and from the Port Washington LIRR station as well as downtown Port Washington, so as not to increase parking congestion and to bring more business to the downtown area
- A significant increase in tax revenue to the school district and to the town
SLC is committed to environmental stewardship, preserving natural resources and fostering a culture of sustainability within the local community. The 145 West Shore Road project will include a full-scale cleanup of the property’s Hempstead Bay waterfront. When finished, the public will be allowed to access this portion of the shoreline for the first time in over 50 years.
Formerly a sand distribution facility, 145 West Shore Road has since fallen into blighted disrepair. The bay is littered with a dilapidated World War I-era pier, multiple sunken vessels, old boats and abandoned cars and tires. SLC plans to invest between $5-$12 million in revitalizing the waterfront, a project that includes replacing the sea wall, removing debris and disposing of contaminated soil.
The end result will be a public marina with 20-30 boat slips and a 12-to-15-foot-wide, 700-foot-long promenade that will connect to nearby North Hempstead Beach Park.
For more information about SLC’s environmental cleanup plans, watch this recent webinar.
How will this project impact our environment?
We plan to spend approximately $5MM-$12MM on extensive cleanup efforts to beautify the waterfront and make it accessible to the community and navigable by sea. As the site is now, there is no obligation for this to be done, meaning if SLC doesn’t proceed with this project, the site could remain in its current state indefinitely.
We will undergo a very public and transparent environmental process with the Town of North Hempstead Planning & Environmental Department. During this process we will look at several factors including soils, subsurface conditions, groundwater, stormwater & floodplain management, ecological resources, air quality, noise, wastewater management, and traffic.
One of SLC’s strengths is that we have an entire in-house horticulture department that focuses on native plantings and ecologically sensitive design. We are excited to bring this expertise to the waterfront here on the North Shore.
How will this project impact my access to the waterfront?
The project at 145 West Shore Road will improve public access to the waterfront. Specifically, the project will provide a publicly accessible 300-foot-long pier and 700-foot-long promenade that can be enjoyed by anyone. Along with educational signage, the pier will feature family-friendly programming with events like movie night, which will be open for residents of the new building and the Port Washington community alike. Community members will be able to access the project’s property via the Hempstead Harbor Shoreline Trail, as 145 West Shore Road will connect to the trail.
How will the project change my view of the water?
When the project is complete, the site will no longer be run-down and filled with debris. Instead, it will be cleaned up and intentionally designed, with a variety of features for all of Port Washington to enjoy. In addition to the apartment homes, the project will include thoughtfully curated landscaping and public spaces so that the community can once again access this section of the waterfront. The public promenade, pier and marina will provide community members the chance to have direct water views by foot. Drivers passing by will see beautiful horticulture and design work.
Will my property taxes increase once this project is built?
SLC does not expect homeowners’ property taxes to increase as a result of this project. In fact, SLC’s development will produce a significant increase in property tax revenue for the region – Nassau County, Town of North Hempstead, the Port Washington School District and special districts for the area. The property taxes that are paid on the property right now amount to approximately $66,000 per year. We estimate that the net property tax revenue will increase over 20 years to more than $27,000,000, including a school tax revenue increase of over $13,000,000.
Will SLC be applying for Nassau County IDA tax abatements?
We plan to apply for a 20-year tax abatement with Nassau County. Benefits to the County include the addition of affordable housing units, minimum employment requirements with priority extended to Nassau County residents, and hundreds of construction jobs for the duration of the project. SLC will also be soliciting bids from Nassau-based contractors and W/MBE contractors. We are committed to sticking with a 20-year basic agreement with no changes or future negotiations. We are not seeking a longer agreement, although it is SLC’s right to do so.
SLC is committing to help offset any new burden on our municipal services. That’s great, but how can we be sure they will follow through with their promises?
SLC continues to have conversations with various local groups, organizations and municipalities to determine potential impacts of the project. SLC is prepared to lessen the potential impact the proposed project would have on them.
To that end, SLC plans to enter into a Community Benefit Agreement (“CBA”) with the affected municipalities, emergency service departments and other registered community organizations. The agreement will be recorded against the title of the property. While SLC plans to hold this property for many years, this ensures that any future owners will also be obligated to abide by the terms of the agreement(s).
How will this development impact traffic?
As part of our environmental studies, we will conduct an in-depth traffic analysis led by a renowned local traffic engineering firm, which will take into account the requests made by the Town of North Hempstead in its Final Scope. The Town of North Hempstead will make the final determination on which roadways and intersections must be studied. The traffic analysis will be shared publicly so that any interested party can read the engineering report. The engineering report will be based on actual data to show the existing traffic conditions and will make projections about how this project will change the number of cars on the road, traffic patterns, etc. All of these analyses will be performed according to nationally accepted/recognized engineering methods and will also take into account local conditions. We do not expect this project to create a traffic problem for the community.
Additionally, as part of the 145 West Shore Road project, SLC will implement shuttle service to and from the Port Washington LIRR train station and downtown. This will help reduce any adverse impact on traffic going into and out of Port Washington as well as parking in the downtown areas.
How will this development impact water and sewer systems?
The project plans include a sewer main and pump to accommodate SLC’s development as well as the proposed restaurant at North Hempstead Beach Park. SLC is currently in the process of working with the Port Washington Water Pollution Control District and their engineers to understand any necessary infrastructure improvements that may be required to make a connection to the system.
An application has been made with the Port Washington Water District for water supply. SLC is prepared to help improve and protect the local water infrastructure as conversations continue with the Water District.
How will the school district handle all of the new students that this project will bring?
We have met with the Port Washington School District Board of Education in an effort to understand the District’s pain points and learn about how we can support the District as new members of the community. Together, we have agreed to select a consultant to study the impact of our development on the local school system. Further, we plan to enter into a Community Benefit Agreement to offset any potential financial burden that may be generated by the addition of new residents.
A recent study prepared for the Long Island Regional Planning Council revealed that a ratio of approximately 6.5 children per 100 units of multi-family housing entered into the local school district (prepared by 4Ward Planning, Inc. for the Village of Farmingdale). Given the data contained in the study, SLC does not believe that the project will have an adverse impact on the School District.
How will this project impact the Port Washington Police and Fire Departments?
SLC continues to have conversations with various local emergency service organizations and is prepared to lessen the potential impact the proposed project would have on them. It is our intention to mitigate any stress this project might incur for the police and fire departments by working together to determine appropriate solutions.
What is the size of the building you are planning to construct?
The proposed building will be seven stories total, with the first two stories serving as parking, and stories three through seven as apartment homes. Drivers passing by the building will only see six stories from the road, as the first level of parking is partially underground. It is also critical to note that SLC determined not to build to the maximum capacity of the location.
How many parking spaces are planned?
Our plan provides a total of 300 parking spaces on site, split between 242 garage spaces for residents of SLC’s development and 58 surface spaces for the public (which are located on Lot 1035). The number of parking spaces has been determined on a per unit basis in line with other projects in similar markets.
Will marina slips be available for the public to rent?
Yes. The project will include 20-30 boat slips, and they will be available for rent by the public on a first-come, first-served basis.
Why is the Town of North Hempstead doing a scoping—and what is covered in a scoping?
SLC proactively wanted to undergo a full Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) process instead of a short-form process in the interest of being thorough and fully transparent with the community. Part of the full EIS process is a scoping session. The Town of North Hempstead is required to have the scoping 60 days after SLC filed with the Town of North Hempstead.
SLC presented the Town of North Hempstead with a draft scope document that encompasses environmental factors related to the development that may merit further study, including soils, subsurface conditions, groundwater, stormwater & floodplain management, ecological resources, air quality, noise, wastewater management, and traffic. The draft scope is viewable here.
The Town of North Hempstead, as lead agency overseeing the environmental review process, will hold a public scoping session on March 23, 2021 at 6 p.m. to allow interested parties, including members of the public, to make written and oral comments about the draft scope. The scoping session will be hosted and directed by the Town of North Hempstead.
According to the Town of North Hempstead, residents who are interested in viewing the meeting can visit: northhempsteadny.gov/townboardlive. If a resident has a comment, they can email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Written comments must be received 60 minutes prior to the meeting. Those wishing to comment via Zoom regarding an item on the agenda, should visit northhempsteadny.gov/townboardlive on the day of the meeting. There will be a Zoom link available for this 30 minutes prior to the start of the meeting.