On Thursday, Jan. 16, the entire Town Board for the Town of Brookhaven approved a zoning change request for the site of a proposed 7-Eleven at 498 Hawkins Avenue. The property is at the southwest corner of Hawkins Avenue and Portion Road (County Route 16).
An automotive service station operates at the site today. There are also gas pumps, but gas is not presently sold.
7-Eleven’s application successfully sought a change of zone from “J Business 2” and “J Business 5” to “J Business 6” for a “Proposed Convenience Store.” The proposal calls for removing the existing building and gas pumps. A new building would be constructed for 7-Eleven. The proposal does not include a gas service station.
Civic and Council Support
Dawn Hopkins, President of the Lake Ronkonkoma Civic Organization, spoke on behalf of the civic at the public hearing to support the proposal.
“The Lake Ronkonkoma Civic Organization has worked with the applicant over the past year to design a building and site that complies with the adopted land use plan in many ways,” Hopkins told the Town Board. “The civic strongly supports this request for a change of zone.”
Town Councilman Neil Foley’s 5th Council District includes the site. He told OnSachem he supports the project for several reasons, including the proposed design.
“The store we approved tonight for Lake Ronkonkoma is going to be completely landscaped, it’s going to have beautiful gooseneck lighting, the storefront is going to look very old country, and there will be enough parking,” Foley said.
Revitalizing Two Highly Visible Intersections
Foley added the design and appearance of newer 7-Eleven locations in recent years have a revamped look. He said this is important because the proposed 7-Eleven is in a highly visible location.
“I told 7-Eleven it’s going to be one of the stores you need to showcase. It’s on Portion and Hawkins and the better you make the store look and keep it clean, the more the perception will change.”
Foley added, “Retail is changing across Long Island and the country, and Amazon is playing a major part in this. We’d rather have something at that location than something empty.”
The change of zone was the first step, Foley said. The next step is a public hearing before the town Planning Board. A date has not yet been set, but Foley expects the meeting will occur in approximately three to four months. The public will be notified with a posting on the property, a certified letter mailed to properties within 500 feet of the location, and a public notice, Foley said.
Similar to the change of zone public hearing, the Planning Board meeting at Town Hall in Farmingville will be an opportunity for the public to express thoughts on the proposal. No one from the general public spoke at the public hearing this past week.
- Applicants presented at the Public Hearing – Video (Advance to 1 hour and 17 minutes)
- Dawn Hopkins, President of the Lake Ronkonkoma Civic Organization, commented at the public hearing – Video (Advance to 1 hour and 28 minutes)
- Full application and concept plan – Town of Brookhaven website
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