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Commercial builders back senior housing.

Commercial builders back senior housing

At mid-year, Long Island continues to absorb an abundance of commercial office space. Innovative builders need to look at meeting other emerging needs if they expect to remain in the vanguard of the industry. As the bi-county area of 2.5 million becomes older, the availability of senior citizen affordable housing becomes crucial and Lazarus Burman is moving to meet the challenge.

While the press has consistently monitored the disagreements between Long Island government leaders and the development community, they are nearly mute about the support Hempstead Town Presiding Supervisor Joseph Mondello, and Town Supervisor Gregory Peterson, have offered our proposal.

They have lobbied for it, held news conferences and written newspaper columns about it. In fact, they have done everything but enlist their parents aid in their quest to put quality, affordable housing into the hands of a growing portion of our population.

Their advocacy is about to pay off. The Town of Hempstead, with the cooperation of Nassau County Executive Thomas Gulotta, is forging a unique coalition with Lazarus-Burman Associates to help fill the desperate need for affordable senior housing in the heart of Nassau County.

As long time builders of retail and commercial properties across the Island, we recognized that there has been a profound shift in population demographics. We saw that if we were to meet our target of providing buildings that strengthen orderly economic growth, we better redefine how we achieve that goal. We also saw the need to listen hard and long to the regional planners and government officials who sought the help of private industry in answering this demand.

The result is a plan to build as many as 600 units of senior citizen affordable housing on a 20 acre site at Mitchel Field in Uniondale. We plan to build 30 units of housing per acre, combined with a 6,000 square foot community building. built at our expense, and 618 parking spaces. Some 55 percent, or 478,345 square feet of the site will be landscaped and will include walking paths and other amenities.

Recognizing who would be living in these homes, we deliberately situated the project adjacent to Meadowbrook Parkway exits and to MSBA bus routes to ensure easy mass transportation access for seniors. Retail shopping is available within easy walking distance as well.

Residency requirements include a combined income limit of $35,000 annually and one resident per unit must be 62 years or older.

At long last there is a housing proposal that goes beyond promises and projections. This is an unprecedented opportunity to do something about the housing fix our region finds itself in and create a substantive difference in the quality of life of hundreds of our older residents. Their ability to sell their homes to the next generation of county homeowner will be a welcomed economic shot in the arm as "empty nests" become homes to new families.

Business Bashers Take Note

Equally important, it reflects the fact that developers are extremely aware of the needs of the community and the region. The financial return on this proposal is no where near the return on a commercial structure.
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Title Annotation:Mid-Year Review & Forecast Section III
Author:Burman, Jan
Publication:Real Estate Weekly
Date:Jun 26, 1991
Previous Article:Recent surge in large commercial transfers.
Next Article:Kessel Assoc. announces leases at 29 Commerce Way.

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