March Chamber News

Greetings.

Spring arrives on March 20th this year and many of us are looking forward to warmer weather and getting outdoors again.

Congratulations to Neely McCahey, Director and staff at Sachem Library for being selected Best Library on Long Island for the 5th straight year!

Our president asked me to write this month’s column covering the Holbrook 2020 Project and the detailed visioning study recently undertaken by Regional Planning Associates (RPA).

Approximately 5 years ago, with the proposed Ronkonkoma Hub and Islip Pines projects, the Chamber began a process of examining what downtown Holbrook would look like by 2020.

Our business district like many others in Suffolk suffer from a lack of sewers and antiquated zoning. Many potential businesses especially restaurants and medical facilities cannot relocate to our community because sewers are unavailable. Some of our existing members who have thriving restaurants cannot expand.

Furthermore, most of the zoning within the downtown was formulated in the early 1950’s   Business has certainly changed since then and has adapted to our digital environment.

We as a Chamber realized that the status quo was no longer acceptable! We had to be proactive and work cooperatively with all levels of government to insure the economic viability not only our downtown but the entire community itself.

During the early application process for the Hub and Pines proposals, discussions were held with government officials on how these “mega projects” would affect our downtown.  It was determined that sewer capacity would made available to our downtown via an extension from the Hub. It was also decided that antiquated zoning in both Townships would be reviewed and adapted to the 21st century.

Last year, our County Legislator Bill Lindsay secured funding for a comprehensive visioning study of the Holbrook business corridor.  The Chamber, RPA, (a well-renowned 90 yr. old planning firm) government officials and community members met several times to discuss the revitalization of downtown.

The study is now nearing completion and we will be sharing our initial findings and seeking further community input at subsequent meetings most likely to be held at Sachem Library.

Irish Times along with the Strong Island Running Club will be hosting a 5k run on Saturday 3/16 along with a ‘little leprechaun” fun run. Further info is available @ www.holbrook5krun.com.

Be sure and enjoy some corned beef and cabbage and have a Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Kevin Guilfoyle
Vice President, Holbrook Chamber of Commerce

 
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