The Islip Town Planning Board reserved decision Thursday night on a QuickChek convenience store-gas station proposed for Bayport.
The decision came after nearly three hours of public comment from residents opposed to the project.
Of the nearly 100 in attendance, over half a dozen spoke out citing a slew of concerns from traffic and vehicle congestion to pedestrian safety and the impact on the local business district. No one spoke in favor of the project.
Two Bayport gas station operators presented the board with a 1,003-signature protest petition and the Bayport Civic Association and the Bayport-Blue Point Chamber of Commerce went on official record as being against the project.
“The problem with this is, as they say in real estate, is location, location, location,” BCA President Bob Draffin told the board. “I would be hard pressed to pick a worst location than this in Bayport.”
Noting she is against the proposal given the potential impact on the fire department response effort, as the department is a stone’s throw from the location, BBP Chamber President Kathy Heinlein said her group does not believe the project is in the best interests of the community.
“We need to protect our community,” she said.
The standing-room-only crowd filled the town hall meeting room to capacity, with some attendees forced to listen from the hallway.
QuickChek is proposing a 6,500-square-foot convenience store and an eight-bay fuel station (16 pump handles) on the two-acre plus parcel that now houses Bayport Transmission, an auto sales dealership and a residential structure. The store would operate 24 hours a day with one entrance located off Montauk Highway, as west as possible from the intersection according to QuickChek, and two curb cuts on Snedecor. The store would offer 14 indoor seats and two outdoor tables providing eight seats.
The company is asking the planning board for two special permits, one for the store and one for the gas station, as well as approval to erect bigger and taller signs than allowed by code, reduced set back stipulations and a reduction in parking as the town requires 66 spots for such a project and QuickChek has included parking for 56 cars.
In addition to gas pump bays, the locations offer fresh dairy, sliced deli and fill-in grocery products in a local community superette format, as well as breakfast, lunch and dinner takeout and catering services. Stores also offer a full pharmacy service.
After the hearing was closed, planning board chairman John Schettino said the board will continue to accept public comment and feedback on the proposal as the planning board begins its review process.