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Hamptons road on sale for $2.5 million, but no development allowed

Holly Lane, a private road in Water Mill,

Holly Lane, a private road in Water Mill, is a third of a mile long, and on the market in May 2017 for $2.5 million. Photo Credit: Douglas Elliman Real Estate

What would someone pay for a permanent spot on the water, but without a house? One family has set the price at $2.5 million.

The heir of a developer who holds an 1,800-foot-long private road that leads to Mecox Bay in Water Mill has put the street on the market. The buyer would purchase the title to the road, which varies from 40 feet to 75 feet wide and includes trees and gates, and while he or she could drive the third of a mile to the water, dock a boat and change the look of the road, development would not be allowed.

Called Holly Lane, the street leads to the bay from Cobb Road and serves 20 properties that all have easements to use the road. The properties’ combined real estate value is about $200 million.

“It’s all about access to the water,” says listing agent Paul Brennan of Douglas Elliman Real Estate.

The owner is artist Warren Pedula, the heir of developer Alfred Pedula, who purchased the property in 1959. The property, most of which has been sold and developed, was an estate originally owned by merchant financier Ancell Ball and his wife, Isabel, and later owned by Thomas Edison’s business partner, Joe Murray.

Brennan says some homeowners on the street have been interested in buying the land, but decided against it because they already have access to the road and the water.

Padula says the family decided to put the road on the market after he began getting calls from attorneys of some of the homeowners asking to buy portions of the road for what he said were cheap prices. The neighbors have not come together to buy the street collectively.

“Either they all buy it and create a proper road association, or a really smart lawyer could buy it and get a lot of publicity and have a lot of fun with it,” Padula says. “Or someone who lives inland could buy it and have access to the water. . . . It’s just a really funny thing that’s come up. It’s a lesson on what is an easement and what is a title.”

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