The following Letter to the Editor was published in Newsday on January 24th, 2023. You can read the original version here.
To the Editor –
Planners have long argued that Long Island’s lack of housing affordability and inventory are the region’s greatest policy failures.
But in addressing this, the Editorial Board is correct in warning state policymakers from engaging in an overreaching top-down approach that ignores the many nuances of Long Island’s communities.
To successfully cultivate more housing development, the state must engage with those individual areas that are most appropriate for growth – measured not only by the local political willingness to build, but those with the infrastructure to accommodate further development.
While our region isn’t known for its flexibility, we have evolved before. Age-restricted housing for seniors that was shunned decades ago is now more commonplace, a feat accomplished without the state heavily intervening to supersede local land use policy.
As housing markets continue to be out of reach for the next generation, we will see localities become more adaptive and accommodating as a matter of not only financial and political necessity – but the region’s survival.