The Hauppauge Industrial Park’s future may include new apartments and recreational spaces as it looks to move into the 21st century.
The Hauppauge Industrial Association of Long Island announced Jan. 19 at its annual conference that it is launching an opportunity analysis study that will attempt to identify ways the park can maximize its growth and competitiveness — with a focus on keeping millennials on Long Island.
“We have the ability to really keep these kids on Long Island,” said Terri Alessi-Miceli, president and CEO of HIA-LI. “We see the Hauppauge Industrial Park as an opportunity to do that. We are looking to make better connections to how they get jobs, where they get jobs and where they live.”
The year-long study will be led by the Regional Plan Association, a nonprofit research, planning and advocacy firm dedicated to the tristate area’s business growth and sustainability, which will work with Stony Brook University and the Suffolk County Industrial Development Agency. It aims to build off the results of an economic impact study of the park completed last year by SBU.
“The Hauppauge Industrial Park is the second largest industrial park in the country, second to only Silicon Valley,” said Joe Campolo, board chairman of HIA-LI. “That’s an amazing statistic if you think of how much notoriety Silicon Valley gets and how little notoriety Hauppauge Industrial Park gets.” Campolo said the two-year economic impact study, included research performed by three SBU graduate students, concluded that Hauppauge’s business economy lagged behind due to Silicon Valley’s partnership with Stanford University. “A light bulb went off after that phase of the study to say, ‘How do we now collaborate with Stony Brook University directly?’” he said. “Because from a business owner’s perspective the No. 1 challenge is getting and keeping good talent here on Long Island, and the No. 1 challenge Stony Brook has is making sure their graduates have good, solid jobs.”
The opportunity analysis will consist of surveying and gathering input from current Stony Brook students of what changes they would like to see made to the park to make it more attractive to live and work here, according to Campolo, citing successful revitalization of Patchogue and Port Jefferson. In addition, there will be a series of meetings with current Hauppauge businesses to discuss what they need to grow.
“There’s no reason the HIA and the Hauppauge Industrial Park cannot also be a tremendous success in integrating where people work and where people live and where people recreate,” said Mitchell Pally, CEO of the Long Island Builders Institute. One major factor the study will look at is the creation of multistory apartments in the industrial park in mixed-use buildings or along neighboring Motor Parkway.
Alessi- Miceli said this is a new possibility since the Town of Smithtown created a zoning overlay district in 2015 that allows buildings along Motor Parkway up to 62 feet in height and along Northern State Parkway up to 50 feet. Smithtown Supervisor Ed Wehrheim (R) said the overlay zoning is a “vital component to the success of the park” as the area saw a 2015 development spike after the zoning change, largely in recreational businesses and programs moving into the area. If this new study confirms more zoning changes are needed for the park’s future growth, Wehrheim said he would welcome the HIA-LI to discuss it with the town.