The Southampton Town Board voted unanimously Thursday to approve two measures that will allow the proposed renovation of Hampton Bays’ historic Canoe Place Inn to move forward.
The board voted 5-0 after hearing from supporters and opponents of the plan at a special meeting to accept and adopt the Supplemental Findings Statement for the Canoe Place Inn, Canal and Eastern Properties Maritime Planned Development District — which summarizes the environmental studies for the project. The board also voted 5-0 to grant an extension to the expiration of the development district by two years until Jan. 21, 2020. It was to expire next month.
With the adoption of the findings statement, developer R Squared Development LLC of Plainview will be able to continue renovating the former Hampton Bays hot spot into a 20-unit inn with a restaurant, catering facility and 37 town houses. The developers will also be able to obtain town building permits for the construction, which Jim Morgo, a consultant on the project, said Thursday they expect to get in either January or February.
Adam Ortiz, a Hampton Bays resident, called the renovation a “significant project” that would generate hundreds of thousands of dollars in tax revenue for Hampton Bays and “generate tax relief” for the hamlet’s residents.
Hope Sandrow, a Shinnecock Hills resident, said she was concerned about how the development could impact water quality in Shinnecock Bay and asked the board to “start the new year with a new approach by presenting a project that solves everyone’s needs, including those who live there.”
Southampton Town Supervisor Jay Schneiderman said the developers had “acted in good faith” during the project.
“For me to cut this off at this point, whether you think the project is perfect or not, would send a terrible signal to anyone looking to invest in this area that you could act in good faith on permits granted and then have the rug pulled out from under you at the 11th hour,” Schneiderman said.
Morgo said after the meeting the developers were happy with the outcome, calling the vote “a testament to the folks in Hampton Bays . . . who organized to save the inn and to bring economic revitalization to Hampton Bays.”
Developers estimated the project could be finished by the summer of 2019, pending weather conditions, Morgo said.