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Jun 23, 2010 11:26 AMPublication: The Southampton Press

Southampton Village mayor foresees legal battle over proposed Tuckahoe commercial mall

Jun 23, 2010 11:26 AM

Southampton Village Mayor Mark Epley told the Village Board on Tuesday night that he expects a proposal for a new commercial and residential development just outside the village, in Tuckahoe, likely will end up in a court battle.

In preparation for such an outcome, village officials will meet with planner Stanton Eckstut and Planning Commission Chairman Siamak Samii to draft a formal resolution outlining the board’s opposition to the project, dubbed “Tuckahoe Main Street” by its developer. The plan calls for the construction of a 40,000-square-foot King Kullen supermarket, 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 and second-floor affordable housing along County Road 39.

Board members have said publicly that they oppose the project, worried that the new retail outlets will have a detrimental impact on the village’s business district. They also acknowledged on Tuesday that the public input they’ve collected has been overwhelmingly opposed.

At the suggestion of Village Trustee Nancy McGann, the administration is also interested in having a traffic study conducted in the area to bolster its opposition. At a Town Board work session attended by the entire Village Board last week, Ms. McGann told the project’s developer, Robert Morrow, that the project would “fracture” the Southampton community, damage village businesses and cause traffic problems in Tuckahoe.

“It’s only common sense,” Ms. McGann said Tuesday. “If you look all over this island, you see one strip mall that comes in and replaces another strip mall, and then one that’s originally there because it’s derelict. I don’t ever want to see something come into this community that takes away from our village.”

Following last week’s Town Board work session that the village took part in, Mr. Epley had asked Village Board members to talk to the public and relay people’s thoughts. The results came back overwhelmingly negative, according to Village Board members.

“They’re not just opposed to this project, but they’re opposed to, really, what happens long-term,” said Mr. Epley.

The mayor said he had received some positive commentary about the proposed strip mall, but he noted that it came from people in the construction trade, who, he said, viewed the project as an opportunity for more work.

“This can and will open the floodgates to big-box retail similar to Riverhead and lead to the demise of Main Street year-round life in the Village of Southampton,” stated a letter the village administration had sent to the town earlier this year.

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Fight this development with everything you've got, Mayor Epley - those of us in the community surrounding this proposed monstrosity will do the same.
By dagdavid (646), southampton on Jun 23, 10 12:06 PM
If the town board votes for this a legal battle will be the least of their troubles. Support Mayor Epley in his fight. Stand up against Mr. Morrow and the misuse of PDDs. There is a petition here: http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/ntototuckahoemainstreet/
By lablover (104), Southampton on Jun 23, 10 1:35 PM
Great blowback from Mark Epley! The promiscuous use of PDD zone changes to aid and abet development has got to be challenged. A question for the Town development-dizzy "planners' is: name us a PDD application you have denied?

There is also a Viewpoint this week by Anna T-Holst who has woken up and smelled the political stink surrounding this. A word to lablover. I am susupicious of email petitions sent to the Town - easily deleted and hard to keep track of: Paper is what they must ...more
By Phanex (83), Southampton on Jun 23, 10 3:57 PM
Phanex, I agree with you concerning most online petitions, however, when I have gathered enough signatures, this petition script allows me to print the names, comments and addresses of all respondents and I will then deliver these papers to the town clerk.
By dagdavid (646), southampton on Jun 23, 10 4:17 PM
I have mixed feelings about this. All we need is more traffic especially since they made the speed limit 35mph on the highway. It would be nice to have a good supermarket because I hate to go to Waldbaums. Does anyone know where this will be built in Tuckahoe? Just curious if it's going to cause traffic jams.
By hrdygrljr (10), Hampton Bays on Jun 23, 10 6:23 PM
I have read Supervisor Throne-Holst's viewpoint in today's Southampton Press and what I take away is that she simply does not get it. The Supervisor asserts that "just saying NO" to this proposal would, leave the community vulnerable to "another car dealership or the like." This is an old political ploy - a bait and switch, if you will (the very same tactic also used by the developers' lawyer at the Tuckahoe CAC meeting a few weeks back) - and completely irrelevant to this discussion.

Mr. ...more
By dagdavid (646), southampton on Jun 23, 10 6:31 PM
1 member liked this comment
Now that the Queen has spoken lets take the pacifer she's trying to stuff in our mouths and stick it in hers ...Bring on the dealership... it will be much more conducive to the traffic flow and the zoning that's already in place. It will also send a message to developers like Robert Morrow that campaign money won't always curry favor!
By lursagirl (187), southampton on Jun 24, 10 3:50 PM
Its all about the potential tax revenue. Just look north and see what the Town of Riverhead has given up for the almighty tax dollar. This should be completely discounted as a public benefit. Remember this is the same town that opted to bury LIPA's lines for 12 million dollars and pay for it over twenty years. Hey if you can't just say no than just say exclude the residential properties involved and give us a super market alternative plus a few stores to make the numbers work. In simple terms just ...more
By Bob Schepps (77), Southampton on Jun 23, 10 7:54 PM
Its all about the potential tax revenue. Just look north and see what the Town of Riverhead has given up for the almighty tax dollar. This should be completely discounted as a public benefit. Remember this is the same town that opted to bury LIPA's lines for 12 million dollars and pay for it over twenty years. Hey if you can't just say no than just say exclude the residential properties involved and give us a super market alternative plus a few stores to make the numbers work. In simple terms just ...more
By Bob Schepps (77), Southampton on Jun 23, 10 7:54 PM
Fight it tooth and nail, Mark! We really don't want the (expletive deleted) thing.
By Draggerman (833), Southampton on Jun 23, 10 9:05 PM
Just take a good look at downtown riverhead. Used to be lots of stores like Swezey's and Sears and a bunch of others. Now take into consideration what has happend to downtown riverhead since route 58 became what it is today. Riverhead is just the beginning. If Morrow has it his way the big box stores will be coming here. Think the village of Southampton has a lot of empty stores now? Just wait, it will be a ghost town. We don't need a tuckahoe main street, what we need are cheaper rents in ...more
By icecreamman (398), Southampton on Jun 24, 10 8:07 AM
1 member liked this comment
RE: Icecreamman.

I dont live in SH or know that much about this applciaiton, but i question your statement that "what we need are cheaper rents."

While that may be true, i guess you could say that everyone would love cheaper rent. We have a similar problem here in EH. EH Village is the most useless strip of "stores" known to man. BUT, if you have Corporation X willing to pay 10K for a store, and a local business can only pay 4K for the same space, its hard to tell the owner that ...more
By tm (174), mtk on Jun 29, 10 4:05 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By CommonSense (71), Southampton on Jun 24, 10 10:00 AM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By dagdavid (646), southampton on Jun 24, 10 11:36 AM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By dagdavid (646), southampton on Jun 24, 10 11:37 AM
Fight it, Mark! How can I help?
By deKooning (88), southampton on Jun 24, 10 12:54 PM
Mayor Epley may be sounding the alarm a bit prematurely. Don't go writing out that lawyer's retainer check until you really have reason to go to court, which isn't quite yet. On the other hand, it's probably not a bad idea to draw a line in the sand so the Town Board knows what it will be taking on if it should approve this project.

As thoughtful and apparently reasonable as Ms. Throne-Holst's Viewpoint piece in today's Press is, the observations made in the paper's editorial are more ...more
By Turkey Bridge (1877), Quiogue on Jun 24, 10 2:20 PM
1 member liked this comment
Commonsense, that was the best comment ever on this site. And exactly right! Herricks isn't the only place on main street with hos for sale!
By tuckahoetrip (46), Water Mill on Jun 24, 10 3:11 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By Turkey Bridge (1877), Quiogue on Jun 24, 10 3:51 PM
Tuchano
By lursagirl (187), southampton on Jun 26, 10 12:27 AM
She looks a little like Sarah Palin, just a coincidence? I HO pe not...
By ride the truth wave (125), southampton on Jun 24, 10 5:41 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By ride the truth wave (125), southampton on Jun 24, 10 5:47 PM
Fourth definition of the word in question: " a venal or unscrupulous person".

Seemingly applicable, but let's not toss around accusations too liberally...
Jun 24, 10 6:08 PM appended by Mr. Z
Venal: capable of being bought or obtained for money or other valuable consideration.
By Mr. Z (10649), North Sea on Jun 24, 10 6:08 PM
For the life of me I cannot figure out how you are able to append your comments. Can you share the secret?
By dagdavid (646), southampton on Jun 24, 10 9:29 PM
Click "My Account" on the top right while you're signed in, then select "My comments" on your "My27east" page.
By BOReilly (133), 27east Web Editor on Jun 25, 10 1:40 PM
2 members liked this comment
thaks
By dagdavid (646), southampton on Jun 26, 10 9:08 AM
First, I am an idiot and any other name people choose to call me for my last comment, it was an inappropriate word play and takes awayfrom the seriousness of the issue at hand. Apologies all around.

Second, Turkey Bridge, you assume I am a man? Are you sure? Can a woman not be opinionated? See how easy it is to say dumb things on the internet? I could be a churl, but I don't know what that is.

Third, my comment was born of frustration. I do not have $5000 or $50 to donate ...more
By CommonSense (71), Southampton on Jun 24, 10 7:27 PM
Good on you, common sense. Thanks
By dagdavid (646), southampton on Jun 24, 10 9:27 PM
Good man, CommonSense, and I in turn withdraw my derogatory comments about you. Yes, I assumed you were a man, given the generic picture which I thought the site assigned when you first logged in, picked a screen name and checked M or F. I suppose one needn't give one's real gender, however.

You're right about the money, which is why real campaign finance reform will cure a lot of our ills. McCain-Feingold was a great start, but we need to go farther.
By Turkey Bridge (1877), Quiogue on Jun 24, 10 7:50 PM
What part of "Outside the Village" doesn't the mayor get? The village board has no jurisdiction over what goes on outside their boundaries! This is a Southampton Town government issue, not the village!
By Walt (274), Southampton on Jun 24, 10 10:59 PM
This is a ‘community’ issue that affects the entire Southampton area, regardless of town/village boundaries!

Someone has to be the voice of the people, if that voice comes from Southampton Village Mayor Mark Epley, so be it… What a shame there are no true leaders on the Southampton Town Board.
By K Aventi (33), Southampton on Jun 24, 10 11:42 PM
1 member liked this comment
I still have faith in this town. Maybe it's a little naive but I still have faith. BUT I WARN YOU! Do not trust certain organizations to help fight this... If it goes through certain people will sell their souls to make money.. As far as the village not having any say, Mark has plenty of constituents and neighbors who's land value will plumett as soon as this monstrosity is built...

By Dunker137 (12), Southampton on Jun 25, 10 12:54 PM
1 member liked this comment


Walt, to deflect serious concerns about the traffic impact on the dangerous CR 39 of this monstrous project, the developers stated that there are a lot of "feeder roads" leading to this mall - meaning routing a lot of traffic through a lot of residential areas in Southampton Village and Tuckahoe, where our children play. You need to think this issue through and realize this project has many consequences other than just lining the pockets of the developer and Queen Anna's campaign coffers ...more
By Obbservant (440), southampton on Jun 26, 10 12:00 AM
2 members liked this comment
You want to make this about dems?! The only democrat on the board is Bridget Fleming (Holst is an independent) and she is the only one who did NOT receive a donation. The right-wing has owned this town for far too long so if you have a problem with corruption, you know where to look.

You neocons want to make everything about Tim Bishop and the dems. Your denial of facts and history is quite sickening, actually.
By lablover (104), Southampton on Jun 28, 10 9:09 AM
1 member liked this comment
Observant, wasn't it you who on another article said, "Let's keep our eye on the ball - striving for . . . not petty, laughable small town politics for people with too much time on their hands! "

You need to follow your own advice. Additionally, as already pointed out by others, Supervisor Throne-Holst is NOT a democrat, but and independent. The only person who did not take a donation from Morrow was the only democrat on the board, Ms. Fleming.

Perhaps if you spent more time ...more
By dagdavid (646), southampton on Jun 28, 10 5:37 PM
It's good to see us "regulars" on the forum have made peace.

Back to the matter at hand, I agree the wholesale "selling out" of our collective hometown, village or otherwise, must be put to an abrupt stop.
By Mr. Z (10649), North Sea on Jun 26, 10 2:51 AM
i need help with my list, what is left anyway, Herrick,Hildreths,Richard York, Corwin's, Fudge Company, Costal, Teds, Dunkerleys Catenas, Sip n' Soda, La Parm, the rest are banks, city botiques,, real estae places and mortgage companys
By local (106), north sea on Jun 26, 10 2:43 PM
your wrong about the city boutiques...the following boutiques are locally owed mom and pops...ready....DeeJays Homenature,Hgroome Renaissance,Ava's Therapy, Jill Lynn Designs,Twist, Norah's Topaire, Primrose Lane,Old towne crossing,Cheese shop,Bookhampton, Compliments,Simply French, ,Edward Archer,Elegant Setting,Privet Cove and more.....................alot of them with great affordable things....Please don't assume their all city corps...
By lursagirl (187), southampton on Jun 28, 10 10:10 PM
lehey's eye glasses, ralph's, silvers, but they will be gone if this mall is approved.
By local (106), north sea on Jun 26, 10 2:45 PM
PLEASE, Mr. Mayor. Do not let these developers and SH town Officials turn SH Village into Valley Stream.
By elliot (243), sag harbor on Jun 27, 10 2:35 PM
Elliot is right; Southampton's special character must be preserved, which means no banalities like Tuckahoe Main Street. Obbservant is right, too, but when we start talking about "Town government at its most corrupt," let's remember that the lone Democrat on the Town Board, Bridget Fleming, is also the only member who did not receive a campaign contribution from developer Bob Morrow, who doesn't give money to Democrats. (I wonder why?) Let's aLso remember that this is far from the first time ...more
By Turkey Bridge (1877), Quiogue on Jun 27, 10 9:15 PM
1 member liked this comment
there is plenty of mall space just to the west; been vacant since they built it.

development like this will be an increased burden on our taxes; increase road manintenance required on those feeder roads / more police to patrol the area / more emergency care demand on the traffic accidents that will naturally exist ... and pretty good chance that the owner lives elsewhere and never has to deal with any his the issues he creates.

and then whent he Tuckahoe School across the street ...more
By david h (405), southampton on Jun 30, 10 1:25 PM