Bellone: "My administration is committed to providing funding to assist our towns and villages with these revitalization projects."
Levittown, NY - May 10, 2018 - Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone today held a groundbreaking ceremony to highlight the construction progress of the Upper Port Jefferson revitalization project, commonly known as Uptown Funk. Suffolk County and the Village of Port Jefferson partnered together on Phase One of the downtown economic development project to help fund infrastructure improvements that will leverage additional private sector investment in new rental housing adjacent to the Port Jefferson LIRR station.
“In order for Suffolk County to continue to attract the best and brightest, we need to make quality investments to improve our downtowns and transportation options,” said Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone. “My administration is committed to providing funding to assist our towns and villages with these revitalization projects. The project we broke ground on today is a major step in continuing our efforts to make Suffolk County a great place to live, work and raise a family.”
Port Jefferson Village Mayor Margot Garant said: “The Village is thrilled to partner with the County, NYS Empire State Development, and the Long Island Railroad on improvements in upper Port to enhance pedestrian connectivity and safety, revitalize blighted commercial properties, and promote safe living and economic growth in upper Port.”
Suffolk County Legislator Kara Hahn said: “In breaking ground on this project, we are reinvesting in this community and in our future. Suffolk County stands with the Village of Port Jefferson as a partner fully committed to the ambitious revitalization plan that is attracting both people and life back into this historic main street corridor.”
Phase One of the Upper Port Revitalization Project upgrades the Village’s Texaco parking lot on the west side of Route 112, which is often utilized by LIRR commuters. Once completed, this phase of the project will create environmentally sustainable, well-lit access that connects The Hills apartment complex to the Port Jefferson LIRR station. The project will also improve sidewalk access to the LIRR station, one of the busiest commuter stop on the LIRR North Shore branch with over 30,000 rides per day, and encourage the use of mass transit, increase parking options and improve mobility.
In 2016, Suffolk County awarded the Village with a $250,000 Jumpstart Grant to begin the Upper Port revitalization project, and additional funding for the phase is supported by the Village. Suffolk County Jumpstart funding allows for enhanced planning, development and construction of significant, vibrant mixed-use transit-oriented development in and around downtowns. To date, the County has committed $11.3 million for improvements to downtowns and transit-oriented developments across the County through the Jumpstart Suffolk program. Phase One of the project, which is fully funded, will cost $850,000 to complete.
Phase Two and Three will continue to improve the Upper Port Jefferson area surrounding the LIRR. Phase Two will upgrade the East, North, and South LIRR parking lots including a new layout, lighting and plaza entry. Phase Three will create Station Street, a new one-way street to provide entry to the new railroad parking lot. This phase will also include additional parking and entry to the new housing developments. The upgrades to the Port Jefferson LIRR station and the surrounding areas fulfill a key requirement to support transit oriented development. The entire project includes improved lighting and access to housing options, reconfigured parking, new signage, traffic calming modifications, new drainage, new sidewalks and additional trees.
This downtown revitalization project supports County Executive Bellone’s Connect Long Island Plan, a regional transportation and development plan that promotes long-term economic growth in Suffolk County through a model of increased access and mobility by alternative modes of transportation. The plan supports investments in regional mass transit systems, such as the Long Island Rail Road, the implementation of new transit modes, transit-oriented developments and the connection of these transit-oriented developments and downtown areas to destinations that residents frequently visit.