Ban The Fair - 27 East


Southampton Press / Opinion / Letters / 1980293

Ban The Fair

It is with some disappointment that we read that the special event permit for a Bridgehampton art fair was not denied by town officials [“Art Market Hamptons In Bridgehampton: Not Approved, But Not Denied,” June 8].

As clearly pointed out in the petition submitted by residents last year, under Town Code Section 283-6 A. Prohibited Events: “No permit shall be issued authorizing a special event nor shall any such event be held within the town: (1) Where such event is largely for private profit.”

By the most conservative estimate, revenue for Art Market Hamptons is well over $1 million, yet their charitable contribution to the community is only $10,000. If “largely” is defined as “for the most part, chiefly, mainly, predominantly,” then to comply with the law the net profit from this event must be less than $20,000. And that does not include the private profits on goods sold from galleries attending from around the world.

Also clearly pointed out by the petition was Town Code Section 283-4 C Reasons for denial of a permit: “(2) The event will disturb the public peace and good order of the town or adversely affect the use and enjoyment of adjoining properties.”

To the town officials who have not denied this application: The six weeks of construction (and later deconstruction) of a temporary 51,000-square-foot building on property adjacent to numerous private homes, the invasion of our residential neighborhood by 12,000 visitors to the art fair over the course of four days, as well as the many problems associated with this event specified in the petition does indeed adversely affect the use and enjoyment of our properties.

Reducing the scale of this event, as the town has suggested, will not eliminate or effectively mitigate any of these problems. Even a 50 percent reduction in the size of the temporary building will result in a structure well over a half acre in area — larger than most properties in this R20 zoning district — and it will require the same heavy equipment necessary to erect the larger structure. The number of visitors cannot be expected to fall proportionally based on square footage, as the purpose of this event is to attract as many attendees as possible.

Due to multiple gross violations of the requirements for special event permits that are clearly set forth in the town code, this event at any scale must be permanently banned from this location.

There exist numerous other sites throughout the town that are more suitable for such an event, including the Carvel property located directly on Montauk Highway across from the Kimco shopping center.

Miles Jaffe


Jaffe writes on behalf of the petitioners to ban art fairs from Corwith Avenue — Ed.