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Jan 28, 2009 12:38 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Plan for seven office buildings proposed in Hampton Bays

Jan 28, 2009 12:38 PM

An application to construct seven new office buildings on Montauk Highway in Hampton Bays, which would require an exemption from an ongoing building moratorium in the hamlet, was not well-received by members of the Southampton Town Planning Board.

At a meeting last Thursday, January 15, the Planning Board asked the Southampton Town Board to table an application that proposes to demolish the existing buildings currently located on three parcels on the north side of the hamlet’s main thoroughfare, just east of the United Artists movie theater. The same application seeks to replace those structures with seven two-story buildings that would total 42,000 square feet in size.

During their meeting on Tuesday, Town Board members agreed to adjourn the public hearing on the application for a month. Representatives of the developer behind the project—Bryan Whalen of the Whalen Contracting Corp in Hampton Bays­—asked for the delay so that they could update the proposal so it addresses additional concerns raised by community residents.

The application came before the Planning Board as a routine referral from the Town Board, which is currently evaluating whether or not to grant the exemption. The moratorium, enacted last June, places a temporary hold on applications for subdivisions, changes in zoning, and site plans.

In a letter to the Town Board, Mr. Whalen’s attorney, Melinda Rubin of Hampton Bays, explained that the project would provide office space to non-food establishments and would encourage local businesses to remain in the hamlet.

Nevertheless, Planning Board members expressed concern that the project might not jibe with the results of a planning study that is now being conducted.

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Awefull Idea. HB is over developed as it is, both commercially and residentially. With all the office space coming on the market and the conomy in a decline, who is going to rent them? They will just sit vacant a big eyesore.
By North Sea Citizen (470), North Sea on Jan 26, 09 7:10 PM
Any investment and improvements in the business zoned area is good. You have to get the most bang for your buck to stay profitable. Anything that creates or keeps jobs in the local area is vital to our delicate business environment in the hamptons.
By Mets fan (1050), Southampton on Jan 27, 09 8:28 AM
I agree that there are areas that need to be fixed up in town however, there are a lot of unused office spaces and retail stores already. We have too many banks, real estate offices, pizza places and chinese food. Lord knows we don't need another nail salon! We don't need anymore chain stores with employees who don't care about the consumer. What we do need are some new ideas to bring some culture and respect back to the hamlet. Heres an idea, how about creating a building where artists can rent ...more
By BigL11946 (29), Hampton Bays on Jan 27, 09 9:33 AM
I think this space should be used as housing. Maybe we should think about making a nice condominum complex with some affordable units. If there is going to 42,000 square feet, maybe we should make this into 35-40 units. This would provide a great location for people to live, easy walking access to many shops, restaurants and movies. Not only would it promote more spending in our village, it would be a nice looking complex that would remain nice due to a condo board.
By Dnelak (2), Hampton Bays on Jan 27, 09 1:21 PM
1 member liked this comment
Keep the moratorium in place-enough said.
By Lefty46 (56), Westhampton on Jan 27, 09 3:54 PM
Adding 42000 sq. ft. of commercial space to downtown Hampton Bays is sheer insanity..Who is going to rent it? In this economy and with what money?... There is already office and retail space that hasn't rented for a very long time... Enough is enough....Do we really need a Chillis or an Applebees with 5 empty stores next it?
By pmofo (37), East Quogue on Jan 27, 09 7:04 PM
Did Linda Kabot actually say in an article last week that the planning board and zoning board agendas were quiet these days? What is she talking about?
Those agendas are busier than they had been for the past four or five years with bigger-scale projects, some that were held off until she became supervisor because they had been previously rejected. She says yes to every lawyer and applicant that walks through her door.
By Hampton (50), Westhampton on Jan 28, 09 7:47 AM
He will never get financing. The WAMU building is going to be vacant in a month and this is just the start of a commercial glut in the Hamlet. Just look at the other grandiose ideas these contractors come up with like leveling CPI's and replacing it with luxury time shares. Yeah right. This pig will never fly.
By Dr Spock (36), Hampton Bays on Jan 28, 09 5:06 PM
This is a GREAT idea!!! I totally support it.

BTW, yes, there is a need for a TGIFs. Most restaurants SUCK with either their food and service. I'll take a major chain over the crap in HB anyday. You either have to pay top dollar for a good meal/service and even then, there's no guarantee.

Time to "cater" to the people who actually keep the Hamptons alive.

By BeachQueen (8), Shinnecock Hills on Jan 28, 09 6:08 PM
Wow, BeachQueen, you sound real classy.

Maybe it's time you moved 'up the island' where there are lots of TGIF's and other crap that could 'cater' to you. We won't miss you here.
By RealLocal (76), Bridgehampton on Jan 29, 09 2:31 PM
To the BeachQeen.. Currently there are plenty of these fat and caloried filled chain restaurants in Riverhead for you to go to..or is this too far for you to travel. .Perhaps eating out isn't in your budget right now.....
By pmofo (37), East Quogue on Jan 30, 09 2:59 AM
Regardless of what people "want" for HB - the building will continue as it has
for 15+ years.

Maybe a car dealership on M.Hwy would be better? Then they can just change the
name to Rt 58. Visually, they are well on the way.

BQueen will be happy - Riverhead2 right down the street.
By G (321), Southampton on Jan 30, 09 2:41 PM
Dr Spock, I am not in favor of most development in our Hamlet, But am curious why so many of us resist the luxury time share ? It seems well planed out and surly would bring in a better element than CPI... not to mention the local boost to our stores and restaurants. Don't be so closed minded we are going to grow, The trick is to attract the right kind of projects and rid ourself of the trash. I remember the laughter before the star bucks came to town. Many people said no one will ever pay 5 bucks ...more
By joe hampton (3042), south hampton on Feb 2, 09 3:11 AM
Hampton Bays downtown could just as charming as Westhampton Beach Village, Sag Harbor Village and Greenport. Yes, those three areas have sewer districts which I don't believe HB ever will have. However, those three villages are great because of active engagement of the downtown business owners and residents. And of course they have active village governments, which certainly helps. But what we need here in HB is leadership and active, responsible engagement of the community, and a commitment ...more
By jm (17), Hampton Bays on Feb 2, 09 3:29 PM
1 member liked this comment
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