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Jun 16, 2010 11:13 AMPublication: The Southampton Press

Town Board hears from 'Tuckahoe Main Street' developer

Jun 16, 2010 11:13 AM

A proposed retail development in Tuckahoe will not compete with Jobs Lane, Main Street and the other small, quaint arteries that make up Southampton Village’s business district, the developer proposing the project told the Southampton Town Board and the Southampton Village Board last week.

The village business district is a tourist destination, and that likely won’t change, developer Robert Morrow told the elected officials at the Town Board’s work session on Thursday, June 10. But rising rents have forced many local businesses out of the village, he said, adding that his proposed development, which he has dubbed “Tuckahoe Main Street,” could offer such businesses an alternative.

“The type of stores that we’re building ... are in no way competing with what’s on Main Street in Southampton,” Mr. Morrow said in an interview on Tuesday. “They’re stores for local people in Tuckahoe, Shinnecock Hills, North Sea.”

The proposed shopping center would be anchored by a 40,000-square-foot King Kullen supermarket and could also feature a bank, possibly a drugstore, a coffee shop, a 5,000-square-foot free-standing restaurant, and another 50,000 square feet of various retail space. An eyeglass store and liquor store have already expressed interest moving in, the developer said. There is a residential component as well, including some affordable housing.

To build it, Mr. Morrow needs the Town Board to create a planned development district, or PDD, on the land, special zoning that would allow the proposed construction, which is otherwise not permitted there. The parcel, 12 acres south of County Road 39 near Magee Street, is zoned highway business and residential.

Assistant Town Planning and Development Administrator Freda Eisenberg noted during last week’s work session that the town’s 1999 Comprehensive Plan recommends town officials consider rezoning the area to be a new highway center.

The idea has sparked considerable opposition, both in Tuckahoe and in the village. On Thursday, Southampton Village Trustee Nancy McGann told Mr. Morrow that his project would “fracture” the Southampton community and generate a lot of traffic on the back roads of Tuckahoe. She also countered Mr. Morrow’s assertion that Southampton Village is only for the wealthy: She said that Barrister’s Restaurant, Sip ’n Soda luncheonette, Hildreth’s Department Store and Herrick Hardware all cater to the year-round population.

Town Board members said they wanted to hear the village’s concerns and figure out a way to reconcile what the developer is seeking and the community’s wishes.

“The major issues are size and scale, and uses,” Town Board member Nancy Graboski said. “We need to take a hard look at the scale and see if there’s some room to modify, adjust and reconfigure.”

Town Supervisor Anna Throne-Holst said that there would be another meeting similar to the work session held in the near future.

In April, the Town Board voted unanimously to consider the proposal and the PDD request. About a month later, the board voted 4-1, with Chris Nuzzi dissenting, to commence a state-mandated environmental review of the proposal.

“The ‘no’ vote shows that I do have reservations,” Mr. Nuzzi said this week, noting that after he saw the community’s negative reaction to the idea, he thought it was necessary to slow things down. Mr. Nuzzi said that, as the project exists now, he could not vote in favor of it: “It’s my hope it transforms into something that will be supported by the community.”

Town Board member Jim Malone said on Tuesday that his biggest concern is the project’s potential impact on traffic on County Road 39. The land along the highway, including the lot in question, is zoned highway business, which permits specific uses that do not generate a heavy volume of traffic.

Mr. Malone said he would vote against Mr. Morrow’s plans if he had to make a decision on the project as it exists today. There are too many amendments and changes that still need to be incorporated, he said.

Ms. Throne-Holst and Town Board member Bridget Fleming said they didn’t know if they would vote for the zone change if they had to make a decision now. “I don’t want to deal in hypotheticals,” Ms. Fleming said.

The consensus last week seemed to be that a grocery store in the greater Southampton area is needed, and that the community wants another grocery store. The debate is over how much more development the community will accept in order to get the supermarket.

“There is a need for a grocery store,” said Village Mayor Mark Epley, who, in the same breath, said that he was also concerned about the impact of the development on County Road 39. At one point, Southampton Village had three grocery stores: the current Waldbaum’s, a Gristedes and an IGA. Today, only Waldbaum’s survives.

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The town board needs to stop consideration of this project. The community surrounding this mini-mall development is vehemently opposed. This land is not zoned for the uses proposed.

I have emailed all of the town board members on more than one occasion and the only response I got was from Jim Malone who actually seems to be listening to the community on this and I hope he will vote against this request for rezoning.

Mr. Morrow, we do not need your development nor do we want ...more
By dagdavid (646), southampton on Jun 11, 10 3:37 PM
ROBERT MORROW is a greedy carpetbagging creep who can't seem to get enough out of the 900 MILLION he's worth!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
By lursagirl (245), southampton on Jun 15, 10 10:53 PM
Enough is enough, Mr. Morrow. Leave our community alone! I will campaign vigorously against any Town Board member who supports this travesty as will all of my neighbors in this community.
By lablover (104), Southampton on Jun 11, 10 3:40 PM
3 members liked this comment
By lursagirl (245), southampton on Jun 15, 10 10:55 PM
Are we going to turn the beautiful East End into Nassau County....?????
By DJ9222 (85), southampton on Jun 11, 10 5:29 PM
2 members liked this comment
By lursagirl (245), southampton on Jun 15, 10 11:00 PM
The rats and graffitti artists stand to gain here too dagdavid. Other than that you are directly on point. The sh town boarf, hwever has never met a development they didn't like. Get ready for a new king kullen and and olive garden in a residential area.
By tuckahoetrip (46), Water Mill on Jun 11, 10 5:30 PM
1 member liked this comment
This area is getting pathetic and who needs another KK. They are the pits. We do need another supermarket in SH, but not on the outskirts of the village in a residential area. Stop cowtowing to these developers...enough is enough.
By Infoseeker (280), Hampton Bays on Jun 11, 10 6:19 PM
1 member liked this comment
Just look at what happened to main st in Riverhead after all those big box stores opened up on 58. Nancy Mcgann is dead on it would suck the life out of Southampton Village business district. Also the increased traffic on what is the sleepy side of the village will ruin many homes quiet use and enjoyment of their community. This is a bad idea. Mr Morrow keeps trying to develop Southampton this is the thrid different project that has his name on it.
By North Sea Citizen (568), North Sea on Jun 11, 10 6:55 PM
2 members liked this comment
I am with lablover. Any town board member clueless enough to vote in favor of this mini- mall does not deserve his/her seat and there are plenty of voters ready to hold them accountable
By peoplefirst (787), Southampton on Jun 11, 10 7:29 PM
2 members liked this comment
The focus should be on the fact that Mr. Morrow has combined one third commerrcial properties with two thirds residential. PLUS is there not a rule that new buildings can't be more than ten thousand square feet? Isn't that why the property next to Hampton coffee in Watermill has three buildings on it because of that zoning rule. How does that developer feel about the Town board considering an exception after he built out the right way? If Mr. Morrow was interested in public benefits just put up ...more
By Bob Schepps (77), Southampton on Jun 11, 10 9:38 PM
Dear Mr. Morrow,

Can you please take this misbegotten concept to some other community?
You can make your fortune in some other place.

Any stories you may weave about how your mall would benefit our community are pure fairy tales.

We do not want your mall. We do not need your mall. We resent developers such as you constantly attempting to ruin our east end communities with this commercial nonsense.

By elliot (254), sag harbor on Jun 11, 10 10:02 PM
1 member liked this comment
These developers blow! I will vote them OUT if they vote this in. Mark OUR words. VOTE YOU OUT!
By ride the truth wave (125), southampton on Jun 12, 10 1:13 AM
1 member liked this comment
does anyone agree that we need another grocery store ?
By Coxie (14), southampton on Jun 12, 10 6:53 AM
1 member liked this comment
No. When it comes to protecting our town and our futures we must separate "wants" from "needs". Besides, the plan is for a heck of a lot mire than just a grocery store and the land is not zoned for the proposed purpose.
By peoplefirst (787), Southampton on Jun 12, 10 8:08 AM
1 member liked this comment
Absoulutely not.
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Jun 13, 10 11:50 AM
i didnt ask if we needed a shopping center, i asked about a grocery store
By Coxie (14), southampton on Jun 13, 10 1:42 PM
Yes, in the village, or in one of the already empty stores on the highway.
By Infoseeker (280), Hampton Bays on Jun 14, 10 11:06 PM
This is the dumbest idea ever - did people stop to think about the people who live in these areas??? The traffic already sucks out here in the summer, now with another worthless King Kullen and a "shopping plaza" (that will probably contain the same overpriced crap as in the village), I don't think the older residents would like to deal with that. Many seniors hate to drive in the summer traffic (from people I know who have told me personally). Let's just throw the Casino there too then.
By LovedHerTown (132), southampton on Jun 12, 10 9:40 AM
Coxie, we may need another grocery, Waldbaums is nasty. What we don't need is this strip mall in Tuckahoe. We have one building, across from OTB, that's 90% empty.(Rumor has it, Tom Sourada is putting in another 7-11 there). There are empty spaces all over town. But we need more Commercial space? I am vehemently against this shopping mall. I feel it will destroy the village.
By Draggerman (955), Southampton on Jun 12, 10 3:52 PM
1 member liked this comment
read above, i asked about a grocery store NOT a shopping center, after the last fire waldbaums had, in the condiments isle there were jars of stuff with soot on the tops of bottles, etc. i think in 5 minutes we could come up with a list of things that are crappy about that store
By Coxie (14), southampton on Jun 13, 10 1:45 PM
Great Idea
By LUVSH (28), Southampton on Jun 12, 10 3:55 PM
A quick question...

Does anyone have any accurate information about just who Mr. Morrow is???

Perhaps Mr. Morrow himself (who is surely reading these posts) can enlighten us.
By elliot (254), sag harbor on Jun 12, 10 9:12 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By lursagirl (245), southampton on Jun 17, 10 1:27 AM
The only thing I know about Mr. Morrow; he developed the King Kullen in Hampton Bays.

That Development was in keeping with the area.
By Draggerman (955), Southampton on Jun 13, 10 7:38 AM
If you live in Southampton & are opposed to this development (or for it, this is America) please email the town council & voice your opinion.
By Draggerman (955), Southampton on Jun 13, 10 11:40 AM
The slogan for this town should not be "Leave no postage stamp undeveloped.".

The exploitation of our community for profit by the already wealthy, and influtential needs to come to a COMPLETE HALT. As stated at this thread's inception, ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.

Allowing this project to be completed would be nothing short of gross fiduciary negligence on the part of the town. PERIOD. Most of us CANNOT shop at 80% of the stores on our own Main St., and this MUST BE THE LAST STRAW. In ...more
Jun 13, 10 11:48 AM appended by Mr. Z
Sorry, "influential". My eyes were still a little blurry this morning...
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Jun 13, 10 11:48 AM
Hey, Town Board Members, are you reading these comments?

Just in case they're not, email them:

Anna Throne Hols:t athrone-holst@southamptontownny.gov

Nancy Graboski: ngraboski@southamptontownny.gov

Christopher Nuzzi: cnuzzi@southamptontownny.gov

James Malone: jmalone@southamptontownny.gov

Bridget Fleming: bfleming@southamptontownny.gov

By the way, the only council person to vote AGAINST allowing this discussion to move forward was ...more
By lablover (104), Southampton on Jun 13, 10 4:05 PM
3 members liked this comment
LabLover--Thank you for the email addresses and Thank You, Mr. Nuzzi!

Apparently, on this issue, Chris Nuzzi is the only mature adult with common sense in the entire SH gov.
By elliot (254), sag harbor on Jun 13, 10 5:43 PM
I can't understand the comment from the Town board that the developers property rights have to be weighed against the community's wishes - the developer only has a right to develop the property as zoned.
It is not zoned for a shopping mall, or any commercial development as Mr. Morrow knew when he bought the property.
And Nancy G - the scale is not the question - the question is do we need more retail development at all when we have so many vacant stores on 29 and in the Village.
By sunshine (47), southampton on Jun 14, 10 11:11 AM
“The major issues are size and scale, and uses,” Town Board member Nancy Graboski said. “We need to take a hard look at the scale and see if there’s some room to modify, adjust and reconfigure.”

Again, as you say, this is not about scale, but re-zoning and it should NOT be allowed. Nancy is apparently deaf to the cries of the community.
By lablover (104), Southampton on Jun 14, 10 11:54 AM
1 member liked this comment
re-zoning is NOT a right. Grabowski has no standards, no education, no core values other than pro-business, "because her husband is pro-business." Off with her (as the) head! You can say NO,tuckahoe..I can't believe the golf courses would want this close to them..
By trace (5), north sea on Jun 14, 10 2:14 PM
3 members liked this comment
Love the "Alice" reference!!

Some of these elected jokers need a reality check. Like Jane's Addiction lyricized "STOP!".


THAT IS THE LEGACY OF "the hamptons"...
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Jun 14, 10 8:24 PM
Ms. Grabowski scares the heck out of me.

Did she actually use the word, "scale"?

If she's already discussing "scale", then a spanking new shopping center is a foregone conclusion.

"Scale" means she has already pre-approved the application in her mind and now figures to engage in some good 'ol horse-tradin' about the size: You know, a little of you scratch my back, I'll scratch yours- type of stuff with the developer. Just to make it palatable to the community ;)
By elliot (254), sag harbor on Jun 14, 10 11:13 PM
Exactly right!!
By sunshine (47), southampton on Jun 15, 10 9:39 AM
As stated above, there is no guarantee of a change of zoning or a right to the same. The developer has taken a chance and speculated on this property. Sorry, your speculation was incorrect. To the Town Board: vote for this at your own peril, the voters do not want this project and it will be the end of your political career in local politics.
By bigfresh (4666), north sea on Jun 15, 10 7:05 AM
No "short sale" on this one.

That invented investment method of eliminating the fact someone has to lose won't work here!
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Jun 17, 10 9:05 PM
If you are passionately opposed to this issue then you must write and call these town board members. They have to hear from the community on this and know that they serve at the pleasure of the voters.
By dagdavid (646), southampton on Jun 15, 10 8:22 AM
Do NOT give any special exceptions for this project -- it is not good for the community
By deKooning (106), southampton on Jun 15, 10 4:19 PM
1 member liked this comment
Please join the SAVE SOUTHAMPTON VILLAGE facebook page in opposition to the change of zone /ppd application that sits on Queen ANNA THRONE HOLST'S desk.....Stop her and CARPETBAGGER ROBERT MORROW from distorting the needs of the people to line his pockets with gold and give QUEEN ANNA THRONE HOLST and her buddy BRIDGET ET FLEMING more campaign contributions for the next election as payment....wATCH OUT girls you'll be VOTED OUT for sure!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
By lursagirl (245), southampton on Jun 15, 10 10:49 PM
Why make this about Anna and Bridget? There are three other board members. Instead of playing politics, why not fight to end this proposal?
By fcmcmann (417), Hampton Bays on Jun 16, 10 7:57 AM
People are focusing on Anna and Bridget because, quite frankly, we expected better from them. They ran on a progressive, environmentally-friendly, limited-development platform. So when the two of them vote to even consider such an abortion, you have to wonder what the heck is going on.
By 11962local (5), Sagaponack on Jun 16, 10 12:12 PM
1 member liked this comment
I too expect more from them and if they vote in support of this proposal I will work to take away their seats next election. The difference is that lursagirl is using the issue to attach just them. Read her posting again.
By fcmcmann (417), Hampton Bays on Jun 16, 10 12:17 PM
Jim Malone and Nancy Grabowski are just as attached to this and detached from the community outcrys in opposition of the Tuchahoe Stripmall!!!!...There you happy now!!! I don't like seeing my tax money pay the salaries of elected officials whom blantantly resist the outcrys from whom they represent... We, the People in lue of favors to campaign contributers trying to con us with Community Benefit BS!!!!!!!! Anna Throne Holst and her Board may owe Robert MORROW.. but WE don't!!!
By lursagirl (245), southampton on Jun 17, 10 1:49 AM
Gee I don't know FCMCMANN???Maybe if you did a little homework you'll see why Bridget is on board to bolster her buddy Anna's vote and they all recieved campaign money from ROBERT MORROW THE ARROGANT DEVELOPER ....Thats Why! their cut from the same cloth... Oh and by the way politics is what's gotten us into this mess that's why were fighting to end this proposal.And as far as Jim Malone he's just beginning to speak and same goes for Nancy Grabowski as they've been hiding with Chris Nuzzi from ...more
By lursagirl (245), southampton on Jun 17, 10 1:24 AM
Your approach is to scream and yell and call names, but that does not work. Your petition only marginalizes the opposition to this proposal. I will fight this, but not by signing your petition.
By fcmcmann (417), Hampton Bays on Jun 17, 10 7:53 AM
It's you who needs to do the homework, lursagirl. In your 2nd sentence, you link Anna Throne-Holst and Bridget Fleming and say "they all received campaign money" from Rob Morrow. That's wrong, according to the 27east piece "Developer made campaign donations as project came before board" (June 16), and the full article in the June 17 print edition, "Developer is Big Donor." These stories report that Mr. Morrow, his company or his daughter made contributions to the campaigns of all the Town Board ...more
By Turkey Bridge (1979), Quiogue on Jun 17, 10 10:46 AM
Y'know, we're all dead set against the same issue. Why nitpick, and resort to polemics?

Personal vendetta will achieve nothing, save making one sound like they are on a rant. Though I do admit to using the CAPS key for emphasis, I don't use it to "yell" with a keyboard.

We're all on the same train, so let's get to the destination, and put a STOP to this potential disaster.
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Jun 17, 10 1:24 PM
1 member liked this comment
You're right, Mr. Z, but the opposition to this project is so wide and so deep that it's probably dead on arrival, even in development-friendly Southampton Town. So, since we don't have to worry about that any more, let's get back to the nitpicking and polemics: Some of the commenters above seem to be ready to give Chris Nuzzi the Good Government Award because he alone voted against proceeding with the environmental review of Tuckahoe Main Street, but remember two things: [1] Chris Nuzzi was ...more
By Turkey Bridge (1979), Quiogue on Jun 17, 10 9:46 PM
1 member liked this comment
actually I'm not yelling, I'm emphazing cause you got that cap hangup going on!!and its Anna who calls names.... describing Chris Nuzzi in a market a couple of months ago as a " fat ,balding aging man"when approached about the opposition to this PDD.and so I'm disappointed in her nasty arroggant attitude toward some of her board members but most of all the taxpayers and the people of this community.As for the petitions,they are all one in the same and if it weren't for myself and about 5 people ...more
By lursagirl (245), southampton on Jun 20, 10 2:25 AM
I stand corrected Turkey Bridge!
By lursagirl (245), southampton on Jun 20, 10 2:34 AM
and also why is it you only pick on lursagirl?There are quite a few I'd think would also rub your feathers the wrong way!
By lursagirl (245), southampton on Jun 20, 10 2:38 AM
Lursagirl, be assured there are many others on whom I pick. Just look around on the board, and you'll see that you're correct in guessing there are "quite a few" who get me going.
By Turkey Bridge (1979), Quiogue on Jun 20, 10 5:15 PM
actually I was asking that to fcmamann as she's clearly isolated my comments as obnoxious and unnessasary but Queen Anna is a fraud and a snot as I experienced her attitude firsthand and more and there's been alot worse comments voiced then mine...She also accused me of marginalizing the opposition which she is dead wrong as I've been one of the initiators of the opposition and have done more to awaken then turnoff except for her of course!!!!
By lursagirl (245), southampton on Jun 20, 10 5:59 PM
Y'know, y'all may want to use that link at the near top of the page to voice your opinion thoughtfully in an open forum.

Heck, they might even read a few at a town meeting...
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Jun 18, 10 7:57 PM
Is there a connection between the Town's planning consultant, a former Town Councilman and the developers???? The Town planning consultant is the guy whose opinion will "officially" carry heavy weight with the Town Board. If they say that the plan meets all the requirements, the Board could easily approve it with no legal recourse. So does one of Anna's political supporters carry enough weight to have her hire these consultants to work for the Town? And just how is it that a planner from Reno, ...more
By Dodger (161), Southampton Village on Jun 19, 10 10:12 AM
Sign and online petition here: http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/ntototuckahoemainstreet/

Tell our Town Board to just say NO to this proposal.
By dagdavid (646), southampton on Jun 21, 10 1:58 PM
Address your letter to Darlene Troge, she is the only employee of the town that is a member of the ethics board.
Darlene Troge, Ethics Board Member
Town of Southampton
116 Hampton Road
Southampton, NY 11968
I believe the other members are:
Dr. Stanley Zinberg
Maureen Sutton
Eugene Gaughan
Michele LeMoal Gray
By reg rep (408), Southampton on Jun 22, 10 9:52 AM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By Phanex (83), Southampton on Jun 23, 10 6:12 PM