Final public hearing held on Heartland Town Square Project

The Heartland Town Square Project would transform the 451-acre property into 9,000 homes, office towers and retail shops. The Heartland Town Square Project would transform the 451-acre property into 9,000 homes, office towers and retail shops.
ISLIP -

Residents got their final chance Wednesday evening to publicly weigh in on a controversial $4 billion project that would change the landscape of Suffolk County.

The meeting at Islip Town Hall West was packed, and some people even had to stand outside.

It's been 15 years of back-and-forth debate between developer Heartland Development Corp. and Town of Islip residents over the former Pilgrim State Hospital property in Brentwood.

The Heartland Town Square Project would transform the 451-acre property into 9,000 apartments, office space and retail shops. It includes some buildings that would be up to 13 stories tall.

Developer Jerry Wolkoff says Heartland would be good for the town and keep young professionals on Long Island.

Residents opposed to the project say they are concerned about traffic congestion, sewer issues and higher taxes.

A study released last month found that taxpayers would be on the hook for more than $3.5 million over the first five years of the project. Developers say the study is inaccurate.

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