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Long Island Mixed-Use Housing Developers Race To Meet Increasing Demand

Rendering for Phase 2 of Station Square


The gap between the number of housing units needed and available on the Island is forecast to nearly double over the next decade from more than 51,000 five years ago, according to Robert Coughlan, co-founder of TRITEC Real Estate Company, an East Setauket-based developer.

Yet TRITEC, one of the region’s leading mixed-use housing builders, has added just 2,531 new multi-family home units to the region in Patchogue, Ronkonkoma, Lindenhurst, and Port Jefferson that were the culmination of 17 years of work, he added. Despite the progress, community opposition persists from anti-development Long Islanders known for Not In My Backyard sentiment, commonly known as NIMBYs.

“NIMBYism … is usually led by, in our humble opinion, misinformed and misguided people and groups,” Coughlan said. “Often these people are the same people that are getting up at public hearings and saying, ‘our prices are too high on Long Island, our taxes are too high’ … They often don’t realize that multi-use housing in their neighborhoods will raise the value of their own homes and provide alternatives for their family members.”

He pointed to historical shifts in local housing needs. Forty years ago, more than half of households on LI were nuclear families — couples and their children — and households of single people living alone made up about 10 percent of the population. Now, nuclear families make up about a third of households and singles comprise a quarter. The population shift drives the need for more multi-family housing. 

“If we don’t increase supply to meet demand, we will chase populations away,” he said.

Of course, erecting apartment buildings doesn’t happen overnight. It can take millions of dollars and three to five years of planning before even getting approval to start construction, he noted. New Village at Patchogue took eight years to get done before it opened in 2014.

Read the entire article in the Long Island Press.