22 LONGISLANDPRESS.COM • APRIL 2021
TRITEC REAL ESTATE CO. PRINCIPAL BOB COUGHLAN
REIMAGINING LI DOWNTOWNS
BY CLAUDE SOLNIK
We talked with Bob Coughlan, a principal
at Tritec Real Estate Co., based in
Setauket, about how the company he and
his brother Jim founded 35 years ago is
developing projects in Long Island’s
downtowns and elsewhere.
Can you tell me how and why the
company is rebranding? It’s to reflect
what we’ve been doing as an organization
for over 15 years and focusing on
developing multifamily and mixed-use
projects in downtown, walkable communities
where we can help revitalize
“We’re continuing to receive tremendous
demand for multifamily, particularly
within walkable communities near mass
Can you give one example of a project
you’ve done? New Village in Patchogue
is one of the early if not first downtown
revitalization efforts on Long Island. We
successfully built 291 residential units,
45,000 square feet of retail, and 17,000
square feet of office space.
How do you develop multiuse, since
it has so many elements? It does, but it
reflects the character and fabric of the
areas we’re developing. Over the last
decades, Long Island, being the first
suburb, broke down uses into a Euclidean
planning process. They separated
office and industrial space. Retail was
in another area. If you go back in time,
communities were built up with a mix of
various uses within walking distance of
each other. People live, work, play within
a radius they could walk to.
Can you tell me projects you’re involved
with as we speak, or upcoming?
We have a number of them. Lindenhurst.
The Wel with just one L. We’re
in the process of finishing a residential
multifamily apartment project with 260
residential units that will be about two
city blocks from Wellwood Avenue. It
opens in early April.
How is demand for that project? Over
1,000 people expressed an interest in
renting space prior to our opening in
April. A good number of people will
sign leases at some point in April or
May. That project and the other projects
we’re focused on are catalysts for economic
development. Since we started
construction, over 17 new restaurants
signed leases on Wellwood Avenue in
What’s the status of your Ronkonkoma
development? We recently completed
Alston Station Square at Ronkonkoma
Train Station, a 489-unit multifamily
residential rental project. It’s proximate
to the train station, but it’s part of a
larger project, 53 acres at the Ronkonkoma
Train Station. Our leasing has
been going extremely well throughout
Covid. Over 320 of those units have been
leased. We’re starting construction in a
couple of weeks in Ronkonkoma on our
second phase, the core of our downtown
at the train station. We’re building 388
residential units and 73,000 square feet
of retail space and 15,000 square feet of
office space. That will be the hub of that
Any breaking news with big projects
to come? We’re under contract to buy
Touro College’s Bay Shore campus.
We’re looking to break ground in June
on 418 residential units across from the
train station one block from Main
Street. It’s walkable from the
ferries going to Fire Island,
to South Shore Hospital.
How many construction
jobs are these projects
creating? The Ronkonkoma
will be over 10,000 construction
jobs. Bay Shore
is 900 jobs. The Wel is
about 600 jobs. They are
tremendous job generators
and great places for
people to live.
Did you shut down or
were you impacted
by the pandemic?
During the early part
of the pandemic,
else, we were closed
down for a couple of
months before our construction teams
could go back on-site. Like many others,
we had to figure out what health and
safety protocols to put in place. When
we were allowed to go back to work,
our jobs opened up. We lost some time,
but were able to make up time on those
projects. Many of our office workers are
still working remotely from home.
Why and what are you doing in Northern
Virginia? My brother Dan runs
our Washington, D.C. operation. He is
developing a large mixed-use project
in Northern Virginia with multifamily
condominiums, townhouses, retail,
museums, a data center, and a school
with soccer fields. We expanded to that
area. It’s also one of the better real estate
markets in the country.
How are your projects being impacted
by people getting vaccinated? I’m not
sure yet how that’s going to play out.
During Covid, we had a significant
number of people moving out of New
York City, renting space in our projects.
People moving out of the city not
only rented space in our projects, they
bought homes. The sellers also rented
apartments in our projects.
What do you see happening next?
I see more of the same. Before
the pandemic, there was
a tremendous need for
multifamily housing on
Long Island. The pandemic
has heightened that need.
We’re continuing to receive
for multifamily, particularly
Bob Coughlan is a leader in mixed-use development on LI.