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Dec 5, 2014 12:21 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Residents Air Concerns Over Lobster Inn Condo Proposal In Shinnecock Hills

Dec 10, 2014 10:25 AM

Residents of Inlet Road and Cold Spring Court in Shinnecock Hills say they have concerns about a proposal to put condominium units and a clubhouse where the Lobster Grille Inn restaurant currently stands.

Neighbors of the property sounded off during a public hearing on the application before the Southampton Town Zoning Board of Appeals on Thursday, December 4. They said they were concerned about noise and disruption resulting from the conversion of the restaurant building into a clubhouse, plus the addition of a tennis court, play area and recreation building that are included in an application for condominiums. The development, dubbed “The Maritime,” would span a little more than 10 acres, with about seven buildings containing a total of 25 condominiums.

“We moved to the area for quiet,” said Richard Bachrach of Cold Spring Court, which is just east of the property across the Cold Spring Pond marina. “The quiet and enjoyment are going to be gone. That spells trouble with a capital ‘T.’”

The applicants, Peconic Bay Marina LLC and Peconic Residence LLC, are seeking variances to allow the housing units, as well as to change the Lobster Grille Inn from a restaurant to a clubhouse, as both the current restaurant and the proposed clubhouse are nonconforming uses. Setback variances are also needed for a proposed tennis court and the clubhouse, along with another variance to allow parking for the clubhouse patrons.

Additionally, the application seeks relief from the town’s “pyramid law” height restrictions, which regulates the height of a building in relation to its size and position on a property.

The plan for the condominium development was originally approved in late 2008, but the Suffolk County Health Department ultimately would not allow that many condos without a sewage treatment system on the property. This modified application includes a sewage treatment system, and it also seeks a variance to extend the approved plan to include another parcel immediately to the north, for a total of three parcels, on which some of the seven building would be built. All of the parcels are currently zoned for single-family dwellings.

Most residents who spoke during the public hearing said the clubhouse was their main concern. Cathy Rewinski, who lives on Inlet Road right near the property, said that the answer to a proposed pool on the roof of the clubhouse should be “a resounding no way.”

“It’s an invasion of our privacy,” Ms. Rewinski said, adding that the entire proposal is oversized. “It’s just way too big for me.”

“I don’t want to see people swimming, and most of all, I don’t want people looking into my house,” said Hank Niles, also of Cold Spring Court.

After hearing the concerns, many of which mirrored one another, ZBA Vice Chair Adam Grossman requested that the applicant’s attorney, Timothy McCulley of the Southampton-based firm Burke and Sullivan, address the problems with his client. Mr. Grossman adjourned the public hearing until the ZBA’s first meeting in February.

Mr. McCulley told residents: “We’ve taken notes on all the comments you’ve made, and we’ll take them back to the applicant.”

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I am so sad to see another shyster go out to the east end seek to destroy what most people are looking for, a quiet place to rest from the hectic life style they live in the city. And the fish, scallops and clams are not happy either.
By summertime (589), summerfield fl on Dec 5, 14 2:40 PM
2 members liked this comment
The infrastructure and services are already stretched to the limit with the massive amount of building going on out here; condo units are the last thing the Hamptons needs. Stop ruining our communities just to line your pockets! (that includes you Joe Farrell!)
By firecat911 (8), Sagaponack on Dec 5, 14 2:56 PM
4 members liked this comment
Condo's and a yatch club will be a welcome addition to the area-that is what waterfront property is for.
By EastEnd68 (888), Westhampton on Dec 5, 14 4:43 PM
2 members liked this comment
NIMBY . Had semi approvals since 2008 can a compromise be made?
By xtiego (698), bridgehampton on Dec 5, 14 6:18 PM
Nice piece of property.
By sleightjames (8), east quogue on Dec 5, 14 6:55 PM
One of the reasons we all have either moved here or lived here is for the quiet. Guess what? Things change!
By itsamazing (224), Southampton on Dec 5, 14 9:16 PM
here we go again residents have concerns that were going to take down a dilapidated piece of garbage and turn it into something nice what is wrong with you people
By widow gavits (219), sag harbor on Dec 7, 14 9:09 PM
These buildings should be considered Town Houses which are taxed at full market value. If they get approved as condos the town gets 1/2 the real estate taxes that town houses produce. This is another example of the town rezoning resort water front business property to residential removing another waterfront restaurant from the tourism market.
By Ernie (88), Hampton Bays on Dec 11, 14 5:50 PM
Do you fools really think a private club house for 25 residences is going to generate more noise and pollution, than a very busy bar and restaurant open year round with a 200 plus person capacity...
By jacy (2), quogue on Dec 11, 14 6:15 PM