As a resident of Manhasset Isle, Port Washington, I’m grateful for your coverage of the proposal to build a large apartment block on the isle.
However, I’m concerned that your most recent story (“Meet Caroline DuBois, Acting Secretary of Manorhaven Action Committee,” Feb. 6) may have given the impression that opposition to that plan is being driven by DuBois and the Manorhaven Action Committee. That is not the case. Not only that, but the debate reflects an issue that affects people living well beyond this particular neighborhood, in many other parts of Long Island.
You asked if Dubois is “a voice for the people or a thorn in the side of progress,” before profiling her as just one of the individuals in this civic debate (and omitting key facts in that profile.)
As you have previously reported, attendance at public meetings about the apartment plans has been so strong that the village administration has been forced to hire larger venues. Strong feelings were expressed when the many people who attended the most recent meeting were told they would not be allowed to make any public comments.
The apartment blocks would set a precedent for more development on a similar scale, and the village administration has acknowledged that Manhasset Isle is already overcrowded, as you reported.
The community and environment of Manhasset Isle (which has only one access road), is already under strain. Car parking is also an issue. Residents support responsible (non-variance, build to code) development, and agree with Manorhaven mayor Jim Avena that more affordable housing would be welcome, especially for younger people who cannot afford single-family homes in the neighborhood.
However, the proposed block would comprise high-end apartments.
Many other towns on Long Island are already facing very similar issues or soon will do. This is why other civic groups have lent support to those opposing the Manhasset Isle proposals.