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Nov 14, 2018 9:45 AMPublication: The Southampton Press

Southampton Supervisor Considers Leaving Bel-Aire Cove Motel Property As 22-Room Motel

The Bel-Aire Cove Motel in Hampton Bays.
Nov 14, 2018 10:32 AM

Depending on the results of an environmental study of the Bel-Aire Cove Motel in Hampton Bays, Southampton Town Supervisor Jay Schneiderman said on Tuesday that he might consider leaving the current zoning allowing a 22-room motel in place—or even walk away from plans to redevelop the site to allow condominiums to be built on the land.

The supervisor in August proposed purchasing the motel for $1,060,000 using funds from the Community Development Program, with the idea that the town could demolish the motel and clear the property, and obtain the necessary permits to redevelop the land for condominiums. Once the permits were in place, the town would auction off the property to an interested developer.

Southampton Town Attorney Jim Burke told Mr. Schneiderman at a Town Board meeting on Tuesday that the town’s Land Management Department suggested a full environmental review according to the State Environmental Quality Review Act, or SEQRA, before board members vote to approve the purchase of the property.

The SEQRA could be done by November 27, according to Mr. Burke, so board members tabled a proposal to purchase the property until then.

The proposal has received backlash from community members, many of whom want to see the property purchased with Community Preservation Fund money instead, and preserved as open space. One major concern is the septic system at the waterfront motel, which is designed for seasonal motel use and has been overwhelmed and failing since the property has become year-round rental housing.

“I have read talk of redevelopment—I urge against this,” Defend H2O President Kevin McAllister told board members on Tuesday. “I think it’s an ideal location for public access.”

Mr. McAllister also suggested creating a rain garden on the site to filter water before it enters a canal that connects to Shinnecock Bay.

Hampton Bays resident Gerald Anthony also asked board members to purchase the property with CPF money and keep the property open for public access.

Janet Allen of Hampton Bays told board members she was in favor of purchasing the property and cleaning it up, but she raised questions about what happens after the property is cleared.

Mr. Schneiderman has said that once the property is cleared and the proper permits are in place, the town will work with the community to figure out what can be developed on the parcel. Once a plan is in place, the property would be put up for auction to the highest bidder.

After the meeting, Mr. Schneiderman ruled out purchasing the property with CPF money. But he said that if it wasn’t feasible to develop the property into condominiums after the town purchased it, he would just leave the property available for another 22-unit motel—this time, two stories, with 11 units on each floor. Since the property is already zoned for a 22-unit motel, he said, that would be an option.

The other thing Mr. Schneiderman said he would do is walk away from the project if the redevelopment doesn’t gain traction—but he is not ready to do that yet.

The Bel-Aire Cove Motel, over the past few years, has been accused of allowing tenants to rent rooms for long periods of time, which has resulted in the pollution of the nearby canal. It has also been cited for numerous violations, including electrical issues, bedbugs and roach infestations.

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You have to be kidding me. Drive by the place it’s still being rented out and kids are going to school from the property. Walk away shouldn’t be an option it’s disgusting
By bigblue84 (89), Hampton Bays on Nov 14, 18 12:51 PM
3 members liked this comment
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By bigfresh (4666), north sea on Nov 14, 18 1:02 PM
Jay - stop your tantrum after losing comptroller's race last week and do the job you have been elected to. Walking away should not be an option. This place is a disgrace and a blight on the town; it should be demolished and left as open space for the community.
By MrsD (53), Hampton Bays on Nov 14, 18 1:21 PM
2 members liked this comment
Supervisor Schneiderman put forth a proposal in August without vetting all the details. Now in November, the Town Administration wakes up and says there should be an environmental review. Whose fault is that? Don't put this on the community, this is the administration's incompetence. The "redevelopment would gain traction" if the community knew what the plan was and they trusted the Town Administration to do something right. With a purchase with CPF, at least we know what the outcome will be. ...more
Nov 14, 18 1:51 PM appended by G.A.Lombardi
With a purchase with CPF, at least we know what the outcome will be. Enough B.S.
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Nov 14, 18 1:51 PM
2 members liked this comment
I am also happy to see that Supervisor Schneiderman acknowledges that its use should be a 22 unit MOTEL and not full time apartments. Some residents would like to see this site back to its original use.
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Nov 14, 18 2:14 PM
1 member liked this comment
Use CPF and be done with it. Any news on the school district suit against the town?

Jay, Why not use CPF ?
By ZGerry (50), Hamptons on Nov 14, 18 2:15 PM
How of the CPF was used for an acre of open space in Sag Harbor? $10 million??? It would be funny if it wasn't so sad.
Nov 14, 18 2:27 PM appended by G.A.Lombardi
How much of...
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Nov 14, 18 2:27 PM
2 members liked this comment
You all didn't know how to win. There was an offer to buy the property and re-sell it to someone else to make it a good, tax paying piece of real estate instead of a dilapidated dumping ground. No privately funded investor will buy this directly with all those low income kids living there -- you do know this is New York State, land of renters legal privileges? A solution for it was proposed and you all didn't get your way so you blocked it and now we're going to be stuck.
You really don't ...more
By dfree (818), hampton bays on Nov 14, 18 3:26 PM
I agree 100% - a few pigheaded people have to oppose everything - now wait and see how long it will take to come up with a solution - I suggest everyone in HB write the Supervisor and trustees and tell them whether ort not you support the original plan and if the community is more in support of it, then they should proceed instead of leaving this in limbo for maybe a decade. It is a disgusting mess and the Town it letting an illegal operation to operate in front of everyone's eyes.
By HamptonDad (236), Hampton Bays on Nov 14, 18 3:52 PM
2 members liked this comment
Hampton Dad, I have watched and/or attended 4 Town Board meetings and 2 CAC meetings trying to get some facts before I make an educated decision to support. You want to support as a knew jerk reaction for what is going on there, go ahead, but don't call the people who have spent the time "pigheaded". This is THEIR administrative screw up. Go to the next Town Board meeting with your family and friends and come out in support.
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Nov 14, 18 4:35 PM
and I will be first to throw it back to you when this is another "Sandy Hollow".
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Nov 14, 18 4:46 PM
Have you seen Sandy Hollow projects lately ?
Built right up to the road & next door neighbor.
Fronts the busiest intersection in Town.
By themarlinspike (542), southampton on Nov 14, 18 5:26 PM
That is my point to HamptonDad - all the resolution said was "purchase for community development". The rest of the Press/press about condos and setting up all the permits, etc. is just oral representation from Supervisor Schneiderman which is worth the paper it is written on.
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Nov 14, 18 5:55 PM
Are you referring to the Town purchasing it?

If so, have you looked at the Town owned properties and what a mess more than a few of them are? They can't execute a plan never mind plan for contingencies.

Had the community had faith in the town that they have a clue what they are doing perhaps there would have been support.
By bb (922), Hampton Bays on Nov 15, 18 5:29 PM
1 member liked this comment
Dfree more worried about it being a death trap. In nyc this would of have been boarded up already and families relocated
By bigblue84 (89), Hampton Bays on Nov 14, 18 3:30 PM
dtree, first of all the first priority was for the Town to enforce the safety and health laws they have on the books where they have failed miserably - no win there the second priority was to enforce the "use"rules for a motel which they failed miserably and let the septic pollute the neighboring water - no win there. Jay shows us a picture off the internet like kindergarten show and tell and he calls that a "redevelopment plan" - no win here either. If you are all for this rally your friends ...more
Nov 14, 18 3:51 PM appended by G.A.Lombardi
rally your friends and family and come out in support of it.
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Nov 14, 18 3:51 PM
If your point is that Supervisor Schneiderman is hard to pin down on specifics I agree -- the last time he was running for office the direct question at the Hampton Bays debate about the East Quogue golf course project yielded a very squirrely response from him.
My point is that if the offer was to take the Cove Motel away from current owners for $1 million of public funds and upgrade it by a transfer to private hands, and your concern is that it may somehow be turned into low income housing ...more
By dfree (818), hampton bays on Nov 15, 18 10:56 AM
1 member liked this comment
You trust that they can buy it for a million and find a buyer? What will it costs us...other than being off the tax rolls for whatever period of time...to bring it to a place where someone will buy it. If they won't buy it now, why would they buy it from the Town? How long would it take the Town to get it to a place that it is salable? It all sounds very easy, but if you look at other town projects you'd have to be a bit leery about their success. How much would it take to make it into a 'luxury ...more
By bb (922), Hampton Bays on Nov 15, 18 5:35 PM
This is not about how to "win", but about people. SHTB has not enforced its own laws and left people in danger. There is little confidence or trust in the SHTB.

The walk on was proof of this. The town has mis manage multi projects in just the last few years. CDP is not even up to date ! The town mis manage that. It is one error after another. Who would ever build a public park without rest rooms? Use CPF to buy a movie house and 10 million on a single small lot?

This is not ...more
By Hamptonsway (107), Southampton on Nov 16, 18 9:14 PM
1 member liked this comment
dtree - also read the article - it is the Town's own incompetence that is causing the delay. Why wasn't this vetted in August before Jay introduced the proposal?
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Nov 14, 18 4:02 PM
Isn’t Jay in the Motel Business back home in Montauk?
By Draggerman (955), Southampton on Nov 14, 18 9:09 PM
1 member liked this comment
Yes he is, and the folks in Montauk were angry about his expansion without permits -- "grandfathered" so none were needed according to Supervisor Schneiderman.
By dfree (818), hampton bays on Nov 15, 18 10:50 AM
Jay is only in politics for the $$$$$ and will support or deny projects based on future earnings.
By bigfresh (4666), north sea on Nov 15, 18 6:52 AM
1 member liked this comment
Here's a thought. How about stop making it so onerous that private investors walk away from Southampton Town. 5 years is normal for any development plan with ridiculous soft costs that many good ideas aren't being implemented. The CPI has looked like a nuclear waste site for years. Now SHT wants part of the action and go into competition with the private sector (I bet their permitting process would be much faster). This is all about job preservation within the Town. Regulations has created ...more
By The Real World (368), southampton on Nov 15, 18 7:34 AM
Condos are the best fit for that property, much needed tax revenue for HB, end of story. The owner should be in jail and the town should seize the property. The proceeds of the auction should fund a tax relief program for elderly property owners struggling to pay their property taxes. I have lived here a very long time and it doesnt matter how many new parks you add when the surrounding areas look like sh@tholes ! The town needs to follow through!!! Fines for residents renting without permits, ...more
By 1bigfish (18), Hampton Bays on Nov 15, 18 11:21 AM
1 member liked this comment
You are making a leap of faith that condos and the alleged auction will be the outcome. There is noting in writing that says that. The press is based on oral representations made by Supervisor Schneiderman. As they say "an oral representation is as good as the paper it is written on " The Board resolution only stated the purchase was for community development. Once it is purchased, it could be anything the Town Board wants including affordable apartments.
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Nov 15, 18 12:07 PM
Actually, Townhouses would be the best option vs condos. They pay more taxes to the school district.

The town attempted to auction off another building. No one wanted it and now it sits there rotting while the town scratches their heads trying to figure out what to do with it.
By bb (922), Hampton Bays on Nov 15, 18 5:30 PM
1 member liked this comment
Looks like Jays common sense approach to solving the Belair motel problem was just a political stunt to try to gain votes for his recent run for Suffolk County Comptroler. Now that he lost its back to politics as usual. Too bad for Hampton Bays taxpayers.
By Ernie (88), Hampton Bays on Nov 15, 18 12:15 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By Fernie11946 (11), Hampton Bays on Nov 15, 18 12:48 PM
Can't make HB happy as it falls into the abyss.
By chief1 (2800), southampton on Nov 15, 18 4:35 PM
Chief, the Town needed to bring this site and many others into compliance years ago. It has been reported as unsafe and should have been vacated. That still has to happen whether it is turned into condos, townhouses, or an ice cream stand. THAT would make many people in HB VERY happy! What happens to afterwards is gravy.
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Nov 15, 18 7:30 PM
SH town, county or state should have problems how it is being used. Just enforce the existing laws...
By knitter (1941), Southampton on Nov 16, 18 2:54 PM
Hampton Bays is where it's at because of a hand full of ignorant morons. Here is a way to fix a blight and some think it will just fix itself. Support Jay's plan it's the only way.
By chief1 (2800), southampton on Nov 17, 18 1:34 AM
LOL, what plan are you talking about? If you have it please share with the lawyers, accountants, and ivy league graduates that have been trying to get it with no luck. I guess your idea of a "plan" is a picture off the internet like kindergarten show and tell. I am not sure who the ignorant moron is.
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Nov 17, 18 8:09 AM
Keep it the way it is guys like you destroyed Hampton bays.
By chief1 (2800), southampton on Nov 19, 18 4:09 PM
Guys like me? What guys is that exactly. The transplant from NYC that has invested hundreds of thousands of my hard earned"city money " while watching HB it deteriorate and turn into the Wild wild west...where rules are applied differently if you work for the Town or the School or if you went to he school and sat at the "cool kids table". Please...give it a rest chief1. I usually agree with your posts, but you are way off on this one.
Nov 19, 18 4:45 PM appended by G.A.Lombardi
I should clarify - I don't necessarily agree with you r comments, but usually find the sarcasm entertaining as with most of the anonymous posts.
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Nov 19, 18 4:45 PM
1 member liked this comment
Chief, she’s not a guy. Just a hint.
By Fred s (3321), Southampton on Nov 19, 18 5:07 PM
thank you for the clarity. I don't try to hide my identity. I am used to the genetic "guy". It seems some of you have more faith than I do in the oral representation of Supervisor Schneiderman as he has one leg out the door.
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Nov 19, 18 5:27 PM
Once again Hampton Bays is the step child. If this was in Southampton Village. it would be done by now and a beautiful park in its place.

Hampton Bays has as much right to the Community preservation funds to preserve open spaces as does the Wealthier sections of the town. The Motel is not a benefit to the Hampton Bays. Developing condos in that spot is ridiculous considering the CPI project. we need open space, not more summer condos.
Maybe the next supervisor will see that the ...more
By summer2001 (8), Hampton Bays on Dec 19, 18 8:04 AM
In HER attempt to do just that, It would seem your next Supervisor already realizes that! Hint Hint Ms.Scalera
By Roughrider28 (80), southampton on Dec 20, 18 8:44 AM