Midway Crossing

Suffolk County, New York

The concept for Midway Crossing envisions a 15-year build out plan comprising four phases of construction for 170+ acres.

The project will undergo extensive environmental and regulatory review processes to address and mitigate local concerns and further refine and maximize the region’s economic development potential.

Background: A Community Vision is Created

Led by the Ronkonkoma Civic Association (RCA), the Ronkonkoma South redevelopment initiative is the result of an extensive community visioning process that began in August 2016, spurred in part by the announcement of the Ronkonkoma Hub (the Hub) development, located to the north of the Ronkonkoma LIRR station.

The 'Downtown Patchogue Walking Tour' took place on Saturday, June 10th 2017

The "Downtown Patchogue Walking Tour" took place on Saturday, June 10th 2017

On June 28, 2017, the Ronkonkoma Civic Association hosted their event 'Shaping Your Community' as part of the ongoing community visioning process

On June 28, 2017, the Ronkonkoma Civic Association hosted their event "Shaping Your Community" as part of the ongoing community visioning process

From 2016 on, community leaders in Ronkonkoma and the surrounding area, including chambers of commerce, civic associations, and public officials, collaborated to solicit robust public feedback through meetings, site/walking tours, design workshops and more. Local stakeholders analyzed and discussed precedents for mixed-use, pedestrian-friendly policies and voiced concerns against residential development. Homes in the area also received multiple newsletters detailing the input process and soliciting further feedback regarding the potential project site.

These planning vision sessions resulted in the creation of three distinct concepts developed by the community. The “Hub Completed” concept envisioned a similar development pattern to the mixed-use development on the north side of the train tracks, with a well-connected street and block network and a plaza over the train tracks. The “Intermodal Hub” concept included the creation of a true intermodal facility providing a direct link between Long Island MacArthur Airport (ISP) and the Ronkonkoma LIRR Station, as well as the construction of a new terminal on the north side of the airport. The “Destination Hub” concept sought to develop a large destination use, including sports and entertainment venues and a convention center that would connect to the Ronkonkoma LIRR station and ISP.

The community's ideas began to coalesce at a second collaborative planning session in February, 2017

The community's ideas began to coalesce at a second collaborative planning session in February, 2017

The first collaborative planning session between the Ronkonkoma Civic Association, Ronkonkoma community and Regional Plan Association took place September 12, 2016

The first collaborative planning session between the Ronkonkoma Civic Association, Ronkonkoma community and Regional Plan Association took place September 12, 2016

In October 2017, Suffolk County, in collaboration with the Town of Islip and at the request of the newly formed Ronkonkoma Visioning Implementation Committee (RVIC), released a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) seeking concepts from companies for the redevelopment of the area south of the Ronkonkoma LIRR station to ‘test the market’ for the three concepts established as part of the community’s visioning and articulated in the RFQ. Four proposals were received by Suffolk County and shared with the overall community. Of these four, two were responsive to the “Hub Completed” concept, one was responsive to the “Destination Hub” concept, and one most closely drew from the “Intermodal Concept.” After a “battle of the bands” community information session at which all four development teams presented, the community and RVIC expressed a preference for the proposal by Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL). In April 2018, Suffolk County announced JLL’s proposal as the winner.

In June 2018, the Suffolk County Legislature approved a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) to name JLL as the Master Developer for the project now known as “Midway Crossing.” In June, 2021, the Town Board designated JLL as the preferred responder to an RFP for the development of parcels of land at MacArthur Airport, subject to the approval of the Islip Town Board of a final development plan. Given the proximity of these projects, the County and Town sought to work together, and in December 2021, the Suffolk County Legislature approved an Inter-Municipal Agreement (IMA) between Suffolk County and the Town of Islip to formalize their coordinated efforts.

Current Site

Midway Crossing Project Location

Midway Crossing Project Location

Midway Crossing represents a once-in-a-generation, transit-oriented development opportunity not only for Ronkonkoma, but also for the region as a whole. High daily ridership on the Ronkonkoma line (over 9 million in 2018), coupled with proximity to regional transportation assets, and the underutilization of land surrounding the train station makes a project in Ronkonkoma a real transformational possibility. This project would comprise redevelopment of the commuter parking lot and the Town of Islip compost facility into a true destination.

Currently, the Long Island MacArthur Airport (ISP) terminal, located on the south side of the airport land, has no direct connection to the Ronkonkoma LIRR station. A terminal potentially relocated to the north side of the airport would allow a direct “train to plane” link between the terminal and the train.

Proposed Project

Midway Crossing mockup

Midway Crossing comprises four main elements: A Life Sciences/Commercial District, Retail and Shopping, a Sports and Entertainment Complex, and a Convention Center and Hotel. The Town of Islip is also simultaneously pursuing an Airport component to explore a potential North Terminal. The Town will pursue planning, environmental review and funding of the airport component while Suffolk County and the JLL team will pursue the same for all the other elements of Midway Crossing.

The proposed 15 year, four-phase, build out plan for the site is shown in the chart below. There are also plans to create a true "train to plane connection” connecting the Ronkonkoma LIRR Station directly to the potential new north terminal via an 1800 ft walkable pedestrian corridor.

midway estimates chart

Please note: all figures above represent estimates

Midway Crossing is a prime example of public/private collaboration. The public stakeholders include Suffolk County, the Town of Islip, New York State and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA). The private stakeholders include JLL as Master Developer, Cameron Engineering and Crawford Architects NY.

Economic Impacts

The Long Island Regional Planning Council named Midway Crossing a “Project of Regional Significance” due to its size, scope and opportunity for regional economic benefits. The projected $4.6 billion annual economic benefit includes increased wages, tourism, induced consumer demand and more that will significantly help the surrounding communities while also having impacts throughout Long Island and beyond.

Benefits include:

  • Establishment of a Life Sciences Hub
    • Strengthened Long Island Innovation Corridor
      • New Life Sciences cluster that will facilitate collaboration amongst research institutions, commercialization firms and service providers to create an innovation hub.
    • Approximately 4,300 new permanent high paying jobs in the field of life sciences
    • Next generation of medical research, laboratories and product development space
    • Attraction of leading local health-care providers
  • New and Improved Infrastructure
    • Redesigned roads, bicycle accommodations, electric-vehicle charging infrastructure, and modernized transit and parking technology to improve traffic flows and reduce congestion and emissions
    • New sewer system to accommodate growth and lessen climate impacts
  • New Convention Center and Hotel
    • Multipurpose exhibition hall to host local, regional and national trade shows, conferences, seminars and other events.
    • Indoor convention center totaling over 300,000 sq ft programmed to host conventions, youth sports tournaments and community events
    • New hotel to service convention center, airport visitors and local tourism
  • Indoor and Outdoor Entertainment Venues will provide recreational multipurpose event spaces to host a variety of local and national events
    • Facilities can accommodate professional, college and youth sports
  • New Retail Opportunities: A mix of daily services and destination retail
  • Leveraging MTA investments in the Long Island Railroad for East Side Access, Second Track and Third Track improvements and serves as the basis for further transportation investments.
  • Commitment to Sustainability
    • Goal of majority of energy supplied to site being renewable by 2030
    • Goal of achieving a net-zero carbon footprint at site by 2040
    • New Micro-grid
      • Allows power-saving and energy-generating measures, keeping utility use down while strengthening service
    • Serves as an emergency response asset
  • A true "train to plane" connection: an 1800 foot walkway that will directly connect the LIRR to the new North Terminal at ISP
    • Spearheaded by the Airport and complements the development of the rest of the site

Regional Context: Connect LI via Ronkonkoma

Public transit investment is a cornerstone of Suffolk County’s planning and economic development strategy. In 2012, Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone announced Connect Long Island (CLI), a long-term regional transportation and development plan that aims to drive sustainable growth by supporting transit-oriented development (TOD) and building modern transportation infrastructure connected to major research/educational institutions and emerging high-tech companies.

The Long Island Innovation Zone (I-Zone), which is a component of the CLI initiative, serves as part of the solution to the “brain drain” problem Long Island has been experiencing for several years. The I-Zone plan suggests investment in growing Long Island’s innovation economy, enabling Suffolk County to attract and retain young people and high-paying jobs. It will also expand the tax base to help lessen the tax burden for all residents. Development in Ronkonkoma is a critical component of the I-Zone as well as the overall CLI plan due to its unprecedented intermodal connections and potential to bolster the county’s innovation economy.

CLI also integrates seamlessly with the Long Island Railroad’s (LIRR) billions of dollars of investment for the Double Track, Third Track, and East Side Access projects. Residents in Suffolk County will soon have the ability to reach the east side of Manhattan more quickly and easily. Similarly, with increased frequency, companies on Long Island will be able to draw more talent from the NYC pool. Development at Ronkonkoma leverages these historic transportation investments to establish an economic and recreational hub while also connecting crucial regional transportation assets.

Get Involved

Summer 2022:

Suffolk County will host public open house meetings throughout the summer. Meeting dates and times are as follows:

Monday, July 11
2 – 8 pm
Lakeland Fire Department
929 Johnson Avenue, Ronkonkoma

Thursday, July 21
2 – 8 pm
Lakeland Fire Department
929 Johnson Avenue, Ronkonkoma

Stay tuned to this website for more information and updates.

Email Us: midwaycrossing@suffolkcountyny.gov

Follow Us on Social Media:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SuffolkCountyEconomicDevelopmentPlanning

Twitter: @suffolkecodev

Contact

H. Lee Dennison Building
100 Veterans Memorial Highway
11th Floor
Hauppauge, NY 11788-0099

Economic Development and Planning

(631) 853-4800

Contact Us