Long Island Regional Planning Council Study Indicates Multi-Family Housing Developments Result in Positive Financial Benefit to School Districts; Not a Driving Factor in Increased Enrollment
Multi-family housing developments are not a driving factor in school districts experiencing increasing enrollment and represent a net positive financial benefit to the school districts in which they are situated, according to a new study commissioned by the Long Island Regional Planning Council.
The study of eight multi-family communities in seven Nassau and Suffolk County school districts reveals that tax and PILOT revenue exceeded the per pupil cost of any added enrollment from the development, with net positive impacts ranging from approximately $42,000 to $737,000, and a median impact of approximately $250,000.
While enrollment trends are uneven across the districts studied over a ten-year period, only two districts have experienced an increase in student population of more than 5 percent, and school-age children residing in multi-family housing constituted less than 20 percent of new students in those districts with increased enrollment. Three of the districts studied have actually experienced overall decreased enrollment since the opening of the multi-family communities which were studied.
The compelling results from this new study were discussed during the Thursday, March 11, meeting of the Long Island Regional Planning Council (LIRPC), the leading regional planning body representing Nassau and Suffolk counties.
Todd Poole, president of 4ward Planning, Inc., conducted the study for the LIRPC, which examined the enrollment trends and school budgets of Jefferson Plaza in Farmingdale, Avalon Rockville Centre, Avalon Garden City (Uniondale district), One Third Avenue and The Allure (both in Mineola), Reserve at the Boulevard (Longwood district), Avalon at Huntington and New Village (Patchogue-Medford district). The communities range in unit from 150 to 300, and all have been built and occupied within the last 10 years.
A second component of the study which examined parking at each of the eight communities demonstrated that residential parking rarely exceeded the provided spaces which are required by local code. The studied communities offered residential parking which ranged from 0.7 spaces per unit to 1.75 per unit. The study found these multi-family communities are providing parking capacity which is sufficient for their residential demand — and that residential parking is not a cause of parking shortages in downtowns or in mixed-use developments.