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Feb 17, 2010 10:29 AMPublication: The Southampton Press

Proposal for a new 7-Eleven on County Road 39

Feb 17, 2010 10:29 AM

The last thing Southampton needs is another 7-Eleven, according to Bob Grigo, who owns the South Fork Deli on County Road 39, which is directly across the street from a mostly vacant strip mall that might soon house another outpost of the popular convenience stores.

The owners of the building, Oyster Bay-based Leland Lane LLC, are asking the Southampton Town Zoning Board of Appeals for relief from a section of the town code that prohibits convenience stores like 7-Eleven in the highway business zoning district, where Leland Lane’s building is situated.

The strip mall, which is 11,500 square feet and divided into five units, is located on 2.8 acres just west of the Hess gas station on County Road 39. The building has been vacant—except for a Sleepy’s that is closed during the winter—since 2007, when it was built, according to a document filed in Town Hall. The developers want to lease about 3,200 square feet of the building to 7-Eleven, the only business that has shown a serious interest in occupying a space there.

One of several neighbors of the site contacted for comment, Mr. Grigo, who also owns Central Kitchen on County Road 39, said he fears that the proposed 7-Eleven would bring in a throng of day laborers similar to the one that gathers each morning at the 7-Eleven on North Sea Road, and would cause traffic jams and accidents.

“It’s a big, beautiful building—I don’t know why they want to downgrade the building with a 7-Eleven, which will only bring riffraff,” said Mr. Grigo.

Leland Lane LLC, which has not been able to “realize a reasonable return” on their investment in the building, was hoping to have already leased the space to 7-Eleven by this month, according to documents filed with the town.

The owners of the building have tried to bring restaurants to the location, according to the documents on file in Town Hall. They have solicited Panera Bread Company, Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill and Bar, Friendly’s, and IHOP, according to the documents. To entice restaurants, the owners of the building went through the Southampton Town Planning Board to make improvements to the building that would help it better accommodate a restaurant, according to documents. Outback Restaurant came close to moving into the building but backed out because of the bad economy. The owners also tried to rent space to a number of cell phone retailers such as AT&T and T-Mobil.

Mr. Grigo said there others who are opposed to the impending 7-Eleven. And while George Kazdin, the owner of nearby Kazdin Pools, and the owner of La Pizziola, an Italian restaurant and pizzeria located in a nearby strip mall that is also pocked with vacant storefronts, declined to comment, Mark Amendolare, the general manager of Bellringer Security, located immediately east of the strip mall on County Road 39, said he is not in favor of the proposal, even though a 7-Eleven there might be convenient for some of his employees.

“If you’re going to have a 7-Eleven, you’re going to have day laborers, no matter what,” Mr. Amendolare said. “It’s certainly something that we wouldn’t want, and it would have an impact on traffic and accidents.”

The proposed convenience store would attract about 98 cars from those already traveling on County Road 39 during the peak hours of weekday mornings, according to a study completed by Thomas Mazzola of VHB Engineering, Surveying and Landscape Architecture, P.C. in Hauppauge. On weekday afternoons, that number is expected to climb to 110 trips in and out of the store. During the peak hours Saturday afternoon, 138 vehicles may drive in and out of the store, the study states.

The store might add 10 to 20 additional cars to traffic beyond those already on the four-lane highway during peak hours, the study states.

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Maybe the asking rent is too high to have someone that would like to open a business that conforms to zoning regulations. There hasn't been one business that has tried to even make a go of it except for Sleepy's, which is still there. We shouldn't adjust the zoning rules because the strip mall owner made bad business decisions. The Hess station pushes the boundary for highway business with its convenience store. Many times I have seen near accidents of people trying to get into Hess with their raised ...more
By Mets fan (1106), Southampton on Feb 22, 10 12:44 PM
4 members liked this comment
We do not need another 7-eleven and we don't need to use day laborers as an excuse. A 7-eleven will have an adverse impact on traffic and aesthetics. We need to be encouraging local business.
By dagdavid (646), southampton on Feb 22, 10 1:45 PM
"...a 7-Eleven, which will only bring riffraff,” said Mr. Grigo. Wow, Mr. Grigo's true colors came out there, eh? Way to drum up business for yourself- by giving the local paper quotes that smack of thinly veiled racism. Good on ya.

I agree that there is no need to bend the zoning regulations just because some greedy speculative developer built this eyesore of a building and couldn't get it rented. They knew the zoning code beforehand, and they knew they were taking a risk when they ...more
By HEJIRANYC (32), Sag Harbor on Feb 22, 10 2:18 PM
I find it disappointing when I hear talk about day labor and riffraff being the business of 7-Eleven. I get my coffee at the store down the road and nobody ever assaulted me. The loitering is a result of contractors who hire those guys. 7-Eleven doesn't hire the people standing outside contractors do. I hope they open this new store so the one I go to will become less busy ! As for Mr. Grigo 7-Eleven means competition, I thought that competition is what America was about not hiding behind people ...more
By Adesso (5), Quogue on Feb 23, 10 7:49 AM
I have a better idae....let's build a 7-11 in Quogue, then you wouldn't have to travel to get your coffee! Riffraff in Quogue is anyone who doesn't drive a Range Rover!
By EQme (112), East Quogue on Feb 24, 10 8:05 AM
Anger issues? Wow.
By yearrounder (208), Southampton on Feb 24, 10 9:02 AM
How about a Quiznos & a Gamestop? =D
By johnj (775), Westhampton on Feb 23, 10 11:45 AM
Shame on Leland Lane LLC for developing without a plan in the first place. It's bad enough that all our open space is being built up left and right, but to do it with no intention or forethought to what will occupy the space? Disgusting! As for the idea of another 7-11, it's a horrible one. That stretch of road is dangerous enough with people not adhering to the speed limit. The last thing we need is another short, busy drive with people pulling out and cutting off drivers, or slamming on their ...more
By LocalMom (36), Southampton on Feb 23, 10 5:33 PM
Please, no more 7-Eleven's.
By nellie (451), sag harbor on Feb 23, 10 9:48 PM

The town needs to hire a consultant to explore if it is feasible to have a 7/11 there, maybe the same consultant that was used to give 39 that Coram / Selden feel.
By fix-it-now (216), sag harbor on Feb 23, 10 10:09 PM
3 members liked this comment
I SAY HOOTERS
By fdny7318 (60), Water Mill on Feb 24, 10 10:29 AM
2 members liked this comment
Leland Lane should never have built that ugly building in the first place. Why should we bail them out now? Time to start holding the town accountable for uglifying cr27 in the first place.
By deKooning (84), southampton on Feb 24, 10 10:40 AM
3 members liked this comment
Ugly ? Wow I guess you drive around with blinders on....look across the street is that place just sooo beautiful ? Maybe Southampton should make all buildings look like that. At the end of the day the Town chooses what a building can look like not the owner.
By Adesso (5), Quogue on Mar 22, 10 1:42 PM
what is the purpose of the HB district? Reduced traffic flow uses. what is 7-11, but one of the highest traffic flow uses proposed. The only thing worse would be a McD's with a drive through, for impacts on traffic. ZBA has absolutely no basis to grant exception.
By trace (5), north sea on Feb 24, 10 11:47 AM
One 7-11 is enough thanks.Seems like they built that monstrousity for Outback Steakhouse, remember when Outback had an office in Southampton village? The economic downturn shot that plan to hell and now the developer is stuck with one tenant. That's why it's called 'SPECULATION'! No guarantees. As to the pro-day laborer comment, they are criminals and should be treated as such. Al Capone got locked up for tax evasion, why should these tresspassers be treated differently. No racial comments were ...more
By bigfresh (3393), north sea on Feb 24, 10 11:48 AM
I would have no problem with 7-11 up on the highway and or an Applebees or TGIF's. Most of the restaraunts cater to the summer crowd not the year rounders. WHile I do greatly enjoy our local establishments there is nothing wrong with a franchise or two. Last that building looks far better than some of the older not as well maintained structures along the highway. Perhaps if they drop the rent they can attract a long term tenant. A place that we would all like to go to. Friendlys, Ihop Starbucks.....
By North Sea Citizen (474), North Sea on Feb 24, 10 1:38 PM
2 members liked this comment
we have an Friendlys in HB and a Starbucks in BH.i want a Hooters
By fdny7318 (60), Water Mill on Feb 25, 10 11:56 AM
1 member liked this comment
... it would make a great hiring hall. I heard they recently fired the manager of Sleepy's. He was caught napping on the job.
By William Rodney (479), southampton on Feb 24, 10 2:07 PM
Scary spot for a high traffic business unless they added another lane to safely get people on and off there. Just trying to go to the hardware store, deli or kitchen cabinet store across from this place is gambling with fate. Drivers have a hard time slowing down to turn in and its frightening trying to get out as traffic never pauses.
By goldenrod (505), southampton on Feb 24, 10 2:31 PM
2 members liked this comment
Ever been to J.R.'s Steakhouse, a great dinner with low prices. Leland Lane have you tried to make a deal with them. You are not working hard enough to get a good company in there.
You can't have a hardship if no business hasn't even tried to make a go of it.
By Mets fan (1106), Southampton on Feb 24, 10 2:52 PM
I heard Hooters was going to move in there
By itsamazing (214), Southampton on Feb 24, 10 3:40 PM
2 members liked this comment
ohhh you people are so racist...have 7-11 all over...its cool =]
By nonya (1), west hampton on Feb 24, 10 4:47 PM
What county road 39 really needs is a WHITE CASTLE.
By kpjc (158), east quogue on Feb 24, 10 6:00 PM
VIVA EL CAFE CON LECHE Y PAN DE DULCE!!!VIVA EL SEVEN!!!VIVAN LOS GRINGOS!!!VIVA LE MEXIQUE!!!VIVAN LOS TACOS DE POLLO!!!!JUJUJUY!!!!
By polito (14), wainscott on Feb 24, 10 10:55 PM
Bring in Taco Bell, Subway, Dunkin Dougnuts, Pizza Hut, Wendy's and a Chinese take-out all in one convieeent location.
By EastEnd68 (888), Westhampton on Feb 25, 10 8:52 AM
we have taco bell in HB,subway in water mill,pizza hut and wendy's in rivehead.and one to many chinese places.i say hooters is the way to go.good time,wings and beer
By fdny7318 (60), Water Mill on Feb 25, 10 11:59 AM
There is no Taco Bell in HB. That closed a few years ago.
By PrivateerMatt (390), Weesuck Creek , EQ on Feb 26, 10 10:54 AM
Since when does 7-11 equal rif raf and day laborers? It always means slurpee's to me. The location period was not a good idea. No one is going to pull in there and run the risk of being stuck waiting for a break in morning traffic. That's the reason its empty.
By pstevens (406), Wilmington on Feb 25, 10 1:15 PM
1 member liked this comment
JR's Steakhouse would be great!
By Infoseeker (258), Hampton Bays on Feb 25, 10 4:07 PM
I heard that Hooters might be opening up instead!
By sharby (2), Southampton on Feb 25, 10 4:58 PM
Walmart, thats the answer, Walmart....why drive to Riverhead. While getting a variance why not get one to knock down the building and build a real "big box" store. The new County Road 39 can now handle more traffic (slower of course when SHPD is around).....maybe a new cinema too...10 screens????
Seldenhampton USA.
By nellie (451), sag harbor on Feb 25, 10 9:34 PM
Target! I'd like a Target there so I don't have to schlep to Riverhead.
By goldenrod (505), southampton on Feb 26, 10 12:14 AM
might be a good spot for a casino
By david h (405), southampton on Feb 26, 10 9:45 AM
A poor business plan is no excuse for a variance. The owners knew what they were building and the underlying zoning as well. The ZBA has no grounds for an excepton here. This ugly building is in the wrong location to attract business. and the rents are absurd. They should have built it in Remsenberg !

To grant this variance would degrade our community, put human life at risk and hurt our home town small businesses as well as make a mockery of our laws. That is the problem in Southampton ...more
By Phaedrus (8), Southampton on Feb 26, 10 9:53 AM
A poor business plan is no excuse for a variance. The owners knew what they were building and the underlying zoning as well. The ZBA has no grounds for an excepton here. This ugly building is in the wrong location to attract business. and the rents are absurd. They should have built it in Remsenberg !

To grant this variance would degrade our community, put human life at risk and hurt our home town small businesses as well as make a mockery of our laws. That is the problem in Southampton ...more
By Phaedrus (8), Southampton on Feb 26, 10 9:53 AM
We do not need another 711..

Applebees or another place like that would do great in that location! ! !
By C888 (11), East Hampton on Feb 26, 10 10:00 AM
A fun bar in Southampton is deff needed!!!!
By C888 (11), East Hampton on Feb 26, 10 10:03 AM
I AM IN FAVOR FOR HOOTERS,DAVE AND BUSTERS,BASS PRO SHOP,
By fdny7318 (60), Water Mill on Feb 26, 10 11:11 AM
CABELAS or maybe a CASINO SUPPLY
By david h (405), southampton on Feb 26, 10 11:18 AM
It would make a great sex-offender shelter - they already have the beds.
By Remsenburger (11), Remsenburg on Feb 26, 10 12:05 PM
1 member liked this comment
fill all the stores,tax free smoke outlet,liquor store,otb move across the street,massage parlor with happy endings and a "gentlemens club"lots of neon and a movie premier light shooting up in the sky.charge for parking ,gonna be in demand.
By STANNER (15), SOUTHAMPTON on Feb 26, 10 3:57 PM
Stanner - those are all of the things needed to keep the sex-offenders occupied when they are not bedded down at Sleepy's. Those uses also would provide jobs for them and allow them to hone their skills. And, the lights will remind us where they are. The only thing you left out is a drug store. And relocating Town Hall there.
By Remsenburger (11), Remsenburg on Feb 26, 10 4:25 PM
1 member liked this comment
how about a car dealer,real estate,bank or fortune teller
By canuce (4), southampton on Feb 26, 10 5:36 PM
All four sound about right !
By fix-it-now (216), sag harbor on Feb 26, 10 6:31 PM
NO CAR DEALERS,NO BANKS,NO REAL ESTATE,WHY NOT A CABELAS,BASS PRO SHOP,HOOTERS,STRIP CLUB,HUNTING STORE,DAVE AND BUSTERS,LASER TAG,
By fdny7318 (60), Water Mill on Feb 27, 10 3:25 PM
How about bad investment guys. Sorry...foreclosure than Community Preservation Fund Purchase...demolish building and restore vista.
By nellie (451), sag harbor on Feb 28, 10 5:53 PM
bay burger, sag harbor, sag harbor turnpike