Why We Oppose the Uplands Project
The Fort Salonga Association has joined the chorus of concern expressed by residents and civic associations throughout the town in opposition to the proposed Uplands development.
The proposal by the Society of St. Johnland is to construct almost 200 units designated for senior housing and a four-story parking garage on 50 pristine acres of pond and forest, of which only 21 are likely available for development. This concerns us because of the significant number of zoning changes required to advance the project. Years ago the Town of Smithtown wisely protected this environmentally sensitive parcel, designating it for one acre residential development only.
In terms of senior housing, we certainly understand the need for additional facilities on Long Island. St. Johnland proposes an entry fee ranging from $395 thousand for a 1 bedroom apartment up to $825 thousand for a townhouse. Additionally, there will be monthly fees ranging from $2,250 to $3,950, plus at least another $1,000 per month for a spouse.
This past August, Town of Smithtown Supervisor Patrick Vecchio joined with Councilman Tom McCarthy and Legislator Lynne Nowick in opposition to this development.
We applaud their position and recognize that a compromise to zoning on this parcel would have serious consequences for residents throughout the town. This is especially true when the State of New York remains open to a land swap that would allow the Society of St. Johnland to realize their vision while preserving this woodland.
The Fort Salonga Association board of directors will continue to engage with local officials to encourage a solution that is fair to the residents of the town, seeks to preserve the natural environment, and is fair to the goals of The Society of St. Johnland for the near and long term.