President’s Letter – October 2018

Fall Season’s Greetings,

Here we’re once again with another change of season. Just like that summer is behind us and now we forage into the foliage of fall seeking all the goodness of the harvest season. Now is the time to head out east and pick those pumpkins and enjoy some roasted corn and delicious apples. Halloween is also a favorite time of year as the children enjoy dressing up in costume and trick or treating through the local neighborhoods. With mild days and cool nights it’s truly a great outdoor time of year on Long Island.

Early last month the Holbrook Chamber and Fire Department hosted a community forum to discuss “street-scaping and beautification” as it relates to the proposed arena/hotel & convention center on the south-side of the Ronkonkoma train station and Hub project. Present at the Headquarters on Terry Blvd. were about 50 attendees inclusive of local residents, members of the fire Department, government officials, the chamber and the Cameron Engineering Firm who gave a detailed presentation of the project which is still in the preliminary application phase.

As many are already aware, the plan which is still a work in progress is calling for a multi-purpose arena that depending on the professional sports team occupant will either be a 17,500 or 8,500 scaled down venue. There is also a proposed hotel and convention center that’s size shall be inherent upon the space of the adjacent arena. A sports medicine & medical office building and a STEM/STEAM research & development center are planned as well. Additionally, there will be several tiered parking garages, open public space and some restaurant and service related businesses.

The entire privately funded project in its current format shall create up to $1.6 billion in economic output in the Town and County during its 3 year development period. Once fully operational, it will generate up to $590 million in annual economic output for the Town, County and LI. Up to 5,300 FT jobs and up to $273 Million in annual employee compensation.  The reason for the location choice is to create a transformative development adjacent to the train, airport and Ronkonkoma Hub.

The meeting was rather passionate to put it politely as there were a number of concerned residents fearing traffic mitigation issues and urban sprawl. The principles from Cameron Engineering took copious notes on all the feedback from the attendees. Frankly, this project proposal has a long ways to go prior to being approved and at this point the chamber as a business organization has no position on this. That being said, many of the chamber’s Board Members are Holbrook Residents as well and this has to be good for Holbrook in every way before any support or cooperation can be extended.  The chamber will keep the community posted via this column and our website… on any future meetings and or progress with this application.

Attention ALL business owners, please consider joining the chamber at our next general meeting on October 4th, 6:30 PM at Trios (Holbrook Country Club). We will be hosting along with our chamber member Freedom Tax & Financial Services a presentation on the new corporate tax laws for 2018.

In closing, everyone please have a safe and fun filled Halloween/Harvest Celebration!

All the Best Always,

Rick Ammirati

President, Holbrook Chamber of Commerce

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