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Jun 26, 2019 11:47 AMPublication: The Southampton Press

Hampton Bays Downtown Overlay District Comes Under Fire At Public Hearing On Tuesday

Southampton Town Supervisor Jay Schneiderman and Councilwoman Christine Scalera at a recent public hearing to discuss the Hampton Bays Downtown Overlay District. GREG WEHNER
Jun 26, 2019 12:50 PM

The Southampton Town Board’s plan to revitalize Hampton Bays came under fire on Tuesday.

Several Hampton Bays residents spoke at a public hearing at Southampton Town Hall to discuss aspects of the proposed Downtown Hampton Bays Overlay District, a form-based code that, according to Southampton Town Planning and Development Administrator Kyle Collins, was designed to create a “vibrant and walkable downtown” similar to those found in Sag Harbor and Southampton Village.

For nearly a decade, the town has been working with community groups, including the Hampton Bays Civic Association, to develop a corridor study detailing the aspects of a walkable downtown.

The Town Board approved the study in 2013 and subsequently hired New York City-based Historical Concepts, an architecture and planning firm, to transform those recommendations into a pattern book, which was finalized in June 2017.

However, Hampton Bays resident Mary Pazan, a former member of the Hampton Bays Civic Association, said that the board’s latest revisions to the overlay district do not reflect the community’s recommendations and, even further, disregards their concerns.

Under the proposed plan, the town has suggested the establishment of four distinct zoning districts. Those include the central downtown district, a transition district, an edge district and open space—each of which is specifically designed to enhance the hamlet and encourage a variety of retail stores, restaurants, offices, service-related businesses, hotels, and cultural, recreational and assisted living facilities, according to a draft version of the plan.

Instead, Ms. Pazan said that the “ill-conceived” plan will push the hamlet to its brink with development.

“Build, build, build seems to be the mantra,” she said. “The board seems to act in spite of the best interest of the taxpayers in Hampton Bays.”

Based on a 10-year build-out scenario, the hamlet can expect to see an increase in residential density—by roughly 147 full-time apartment units—as well as increases in solid waste generation and water usage, according to a supplemental draft environmental impact statement, or EIS, prepared by Charles “Chick” Voorhis of Melville-based Nelson, Pope & Voorhis.

According to the draft EIS, water usage in the hamlet is expected to increase from 75,494 to 141,176 gallons per day, and sanitary waste generation is expected to increase from 62,787 to 128,829 pounds per day—requiring infrastructure upgrades to the Hampton Bays Water District and the installation of a sewage treatment plant.

Additionally, the Hampton Bays School District can expect to see an additional 15 students. Mr. Collins said that the financial impact on the school would be covered primarily by an anticipated increase in tax revenue from future development.

Hampton Bays resident Ray DeAngelo, however, was skeptical that the impacts to the school would be as minimal as Mr. Collins predicted. “It’s science fiction that there’s only going to be 28 kids coming out of 248 apartments,” he said.

He also argued that the intent of the form-based code is, in fact, moot, noting that big-box stores—precisely what the community doesn’t want to see in the hamlet—are the future of Hampton Bays regardless of whether the Town Board approves the plan.

Stores are closing all over the place,” he said pointing to the Hampton Bays United Artist movie theater, that will close its doors in December. “I know these people want all these shops, it’s not going to happen. They’re not sustainable.”

In fact, Mr. Voorhis explained that, if approved, developers are not bound by the form-based code. He explained that it is in essence an “overlay” of the town’s pre-existing zoning code, which he said will continue to be used by the town’s regulatory boards to determine what can and can’t be developed.

Additionally, hamlet resident Gayle Lombardi stressed that several aspects of the plan were not consistent with the community-driven corridor study.

For example, she pointed to the proposed transition district, which, if approved, would allow for first floor residential apartments—an aspect that she said was never discussed with the community.

She argued that the hamlet could not endure any more density, calling the residential aspects of the plan “extremely offensive.”

“There’s a lot of good things in the plan, but these elements have to be removed,” she said.

Mr. Collins, however, confirmed that the transition district does not allow for first-floor residential units along Springville Road or Montauk Highway.

While a large majority of residents who spoke at the meeting were either opposed or concerned over the town’s plan to revitalize Hampton Bays, there were a select few who were in favor of it.

Susan von Freddi, president of the Hampton Bays Beautification Association, said that the form-based code would help promote local businesses and bring a much needed vibrancy to the hamlet’s main street.

Maria Hultz, president of the Hampton Bays Civic Association, agreed, although she suggested that the Town Board provide some form of incentive to community-based shops rather than big-box stores. “We’re looking forward to seeing a very pretty town,” she said.

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Maybe strive to be like the other villages that people like... southampton, sag harbor, bridgehampton, east hampton, east quogue -
By adlkjd923ilifmac.aladfksdurwp (747), southampton on Jun 26, 19 4:11 PM
1 member liked this comment
That was the original intent, but only the Town Planning Department can bastardize a plan that could have been a positive for HB into a physical and fiscal strain on a community that is already strained. They prey on the people of HB hoping no one is going to look at the "fine print" in a 500 page document. Since many of us don't trust anything that this Administration tells us, some of us actually do look at the fine print. They then stand in righteous indignation when challenged forgetting ...more
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Jun 26, 19 6:10 PM
3 members liked this comment
A step in the right direction but a "bait and switch" rip off by the SHTB to over develop Hampton Bays for work force housing for those east of the canal. This board is using Hampton Bays to place HUGE density upon it. A 200 bed "assisted living" facility was never part of any meeting I attended. The number of residences was never part of any meetings prior. The Town and the Town Planning Department is not, and has not been truthful. To use CPF credits is dishonest, not truthful and a complete ...more
By Hamptonsway (107), Southampton on Jun 26, 19 9:43 PM
2 members liked this comment
Gayle: I appreciate your well researched , articulate comments here, perhaps a run for Town Board is in your future?
By bigfresh (4666), north sea on Jun 27, 19 6:46 AM
2 members liked this comment
We don't always see eye to eye, but based on G.A. Lombardi's nuanced and eloquent comments here I'd vote for her.
By Fore1gnBornHBgrown (8265), HAMPTON BAYS on Jun 27, 19 7:53 AM
1 member liked this comment
Coming from the two of you, I am truly humbled. I will keep that in mind.
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Jun 27, 19 8:10 AM
1 member liked this comment
By ZGerry (50), Hamptons on Jun 30, 19 12:59 AM
Make Hampton Bays completely safe for people walking and biking; there’s no sidewalks East, West, North and South of downtown. Crossing Montauk Hwy is dangerous throughout town. A pedestrian walking and biking path is absolutely needed in front of the Coast Guard Station so people can avoid walking in the road to the Ponquogue Bridge. SIDEWALKS SIDEWALKS SIDEWALKS SIDEWALKS NEEDED!
By Non-Political (125), Hampton Bays on Jun 26, 19 5:50 PM
I agree with you in principle, but there's definitely at least one long stretch of sidewalk from the intersection of Ponquogue and Montauk Hwy that runs all the way south to the schools, and several branches on roads like Argonne.
By Fore1gnBornHBgrown (8265), HAMPTON BAYS on Jun 26, 19 6:22 PM
I agree - I use the sidewalks all the time and usually the only one. They extended the sidewalk to RBS and Macy's a few years ago and Macy's installed a walkway. They also extended the sidewalks on the east side of Ponquogoe and east to the high school. They should invest in sidewalks on Springville and south to the beach. This plan does not address any of this.

By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Jun 26, 19 7:07 PM
The Hampton bays civic association is the biggest problem for Hampton bays. It went from a once vibrant beautiful town To a place with problems. Thank civic association you've done a bang-up job For the last 30 years
By chief1 (2800), southampton on Jun 27, 19 12:34 AM
2 members liked this comment
Only the proud folks of the place I call home could hear “a Main Street like sag harbor” and think they’re too good for that lol You know how sag harbor pays for a beautiful vibrant community? Condos. Volume. A whole lot of freaking condos. Jeeeeeeeez are we stubborn
By banned (191), Hampton Bays on Jun 27, 19 2:17 AM
These are not a handful of high end condos - these are high density workforce housing with 20% allocated to affordable housing. This would NEVER be allowed in Sag Harbor, Westhampton or Southampton Village. The Town did a "bait and switch" by calling it "South Hampton", when it will be a shingled version of South Jamaica or the South Bronx. It WAS a good plan that needs to be scaled back to the original plan.
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Jun 27, 19 3:32 AM
1 member liked this comment
The very first thing the Town fathers (and mothers) must do to address the downfall of Hampton Bays is to stand up and point the finger directly at themselves. Town Hall has done more to destroy the vibrant community that was Hampton Bays than all the other economic and social factors combined.

Who would expect thriving waterfront businesses to be closed down by, or with the assistance of, the Town itself? Unfortunately, the answer is anyone who has been paying attention for the past ...more
By VOS (1241), WHB on Jun 27, 19 3:50 AM
4 members liked this comment
Please remember it was Cannuscio, Heaney and Kabot who destroyed the hamlet in the first place.
By tenn tom (259), remsenburg on Jun 27, 19 7:33 AM
I think that it was under Throne-Holst and we have some of the same people in leadership roles as a carryover under the Scheiderman administration that either don't care, don't know, or do know and mislead the public....and let me add collecting a substantial compensation package
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Jun 27, 19 8:03 AM
2 members liked this comment
I don't know what's best for the hamlet, but I do know that ANYTHING has to be better than the tacky corridor of nail salons and quinceanera dresses that we have now. Can't we get a cute breakfast spot? A Golden Pear? A Hampton Coffee? A Lucharito's? A Hampton Books? I frequent all of those place...but not in Hampton Bays. :(
By Tay (35), Hampton Bays on Jun 27, 19 12:11 PM
2 members liked this comment
Most people I know in HB agree, but that can be accomplished without the excessive over-development of apartments and a 100-bed assisted living that will strain the infrastructure and fragile socio-economic balance of HB mostly funded by underutilized single family homes and commercial properties. The Town of "NO" needs to make it easier for the businesses to do business and expand their business and footprint and provide for some sort of waste treatment. Easy Breezy
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Jun 27, 19 12:44 PM
Take a simple inventory of the store fronts along Main Street from Ponquogue to Springville. The quadrant of stores on the corners of Ponquogue,
Main Street, and Squiretown lack charm - a tavern (one closed) that doesn’t serve food, a massage parlor/“spa”, whatever the design store is, and Tony’s Asian Fusion. Continue to meander along Main Street and there’s more stores which I truly wonder how they’re able to afford rent or make a profit. The Ligget’s ...more
By HB2NYC (6), Manhattan on Jun 27, 19 12:30 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By HB2NYC (6), Manhattan on Jun 27, 19 12:30 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By banned (191), Hampton Bays on Jun 28, 19 1:10 AM
Traffic light at Good Ground / Springville intersection..
By aging hipster (201), Southampton on Jun 28, 19 8:02 AM
Why? Traffic is light to occasionally moderate, sightlines are good, stop sign is more than adequate.
By VOS (1241), WHB on Jun 28, 19 9:10 PM
Based on the presentation from the representatives of the CVS, they may need to do a traffic study. I think the problem there is when people are on Good Ground Road heading west trying to make a left or maybe even a right. They also indicated that it will be much worse "when all the apartments are built". I guess they had the inside scoop on what is going on. Let's see how this plays out over the next few months - the Town leadership is hoping no one is paying attention.
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Jun 28, 19 9:39 PM
Traffic studies? No one pays attention to traffic studies, they're just thrown up as roadblocks to change, good, bad or awful.

If I'm not mistaken the initial approval of the movie theatre development required more landscaping than was ever completed and it also required an access road from the movie theatre property to Good Ground Road to the east of the auto repair shop which was a gas station at the time. What happened to that?

And if we're going to talk about traffic studies ...more
By VOS (1241), WHB on Jun 29, 19 1:13 AM
Agreed VOS - this is the Town of analysis paralysis a/k/a the full employment act of consultants and planners. Things are bastardized beyond the point of recognition on in piecemeal implementation. I don't know if it is because they don't know, don't care or they are representing some special interest group. No matter what the reason, Hampton Bays pays the price literally and figuratively. As an aside, if anyone thinks Julie Lofstad is advocating for HB, that shipped sailed when she was re-elected. ...more
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Jun 29, 19 6:05 AM
1 member liked this comment
The Southampton Town Board ’came under fire for allowing the Planning and Development group to have an " Overlay District code plan" that is a POS.

It is filled with assumptions. The proposal is sneaky and never presented in past with this level density. Never ! Kyle Collins mission seems to be designed to create a work force housing district to make it look like Patchogue..

I assume the plan will increase your taxes. With 250 apartments and 1 child per apartment, the ...more
By ZGerry (50), Hamptons on Jun 30, 19 12:54 AM
Mo old home town is looking like Pottersville from It's a Wonderful Life!!!
By bigfresh (4666), north sea on Jun 30, 19 7:14 AM
As I recall, Mr. Potter was a mean & nasty registered voting democrat.
Jun 30, 19 7:42 AM appended by themarlinspike
Imagine Jobs Lane & Main Street shut off to traffic and full of drunken left wing revelers breaking any law they choose while local law enforcement stand by silently.
By themarlinspike (542), Northern Hemisphere on Jun 30, 19 7:42 AM
Ah, from the Breitbart school of lies and hate.
By tenn tom (259), remsenburg on Jun 30, 19 8:25 AM
I see you've started your reveling already.
By themarlinspike (542), Northern Hemisphere on Jun 30, 19 8:39 AM
I repeat, this administration preys on the good people of HB. The Town representatives come to meetings and they see the same 30-40 people and know that most people are not going to read the fine print in a 500 page document. The Town received approximately 1000 responses to an on-line survey of "pretty pictures" and keep calling this Southampton or Sag Harbor' when the reality is that this is a back door for high density workforce housing and an assisted living facility that is more akin to ...more
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Jun 30, 19 11:48 AM
1 member liked this comment
Hampton Bays is an illegal immigrant gold rush town. It has been sacrificed on the alter of the rich who live to the east. Saw the writing on the wall in 2013 and left HB behind. It's over folks. Live with it or move out.
By Babyboo (293), Hampton Bays on Jul 2, 19 6:53 PM
I have lived here from 1999 and while your are entitled to your opinion, your comment regarding illegal immigrants is not relevant to the issue at hand. Density is density is density - no matter who is there. It is like a life boat...one more person and everyone sinks. However, I will agree that this plan, coupled with the new east bound trains is the Urbanization of HB for the benefit of the Towns east of HB at the expense of the single family property owners.
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Jul 2, 19 9:51 PM
I'm confused by these comments. It sounds like most of you want people strolling along Main and supporting cute coffee shops, but not "density," i.e., people living above the cute shops. But don't the two go hand in hand? It seems to me that an apartment dweller living right in downtown is highly likely to be one of those pedestrian shoppers. Or is the idea to attract people from other towns who drive there in cars? Would love to better understand the vision for Hampton Bays.
By Julie Sheehan (11), East Quogue on Jul 4, 19 10:54 AM
1 member liked this comment
Most people expected dwelling units above stores - however the plan know allows for approximately 1/2 of the business district to be 100% residential apartments with 20% allocated to affordable housing (10% more than required) and a site for a 100 bed assisted living facility. The height can be 3 stories and the lot coverage is very dense. HB cannot handle this level of density. There are already 13,000 full time residents in HB - 3X that of EQ, we have the highest school tax rate in the Town ...more
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Jul 4, 19 7:49 PM
should be "now" not know allows...
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Jul 5, 19 6:17 AM
Thanks for the reply!
By Julie Sheehan (11), East Quogue on Jul 5, 19 11:14 AM
Thanks for being interested...
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Jul 5, 19 3:29 PM
Speaking of Sag Harbor, Southampton Village, Westhampton Beach just
remember they are all incorporated and can control their own destiny. I hope
East Quogue incorporates as well, and Hampton Bays should as
By Jimion (129), Hampton Bays on Jul 5, 19 7:37 PM
There was a committee a few years ago that was disbanded. I am not sure what happened there. This is why the Town gets to "dump" on HB. Contrary to what the elected Board has represented about their understanding of the density and HB should have its fair share of the tourist revenue, they did a "back door" a high dense work force housing project with a site for a 100 bed assisted living. All objectives of the Town, but certainly not good for the HB Downtown District. We need to "dump" this ...more
By G.A.Lombardi (575), Hampton Bays on Jul 5, 19 7:50 PM