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East Hampton close to approving site for medical facility

Town of East Hampton Little League field in

Town of East Hampton Little League field in East Hampton, Dec. 7, 2016. The East Hampton Town Board is expected to recommend a 4.5 acre Little League ballfields site off Pantigo Road as the site for a proposed Southampton Hospital satellite emergency room facility. Photo Credit: Ed Betz

A 4.5-acre East Hampton Town-owned property where Little League ballfields are now located is expected to be recommended as the site for an emergency facility Southampton Hospital wants to build to provide medical services closer to area residents.

At the town board’s work session Tuesday, all of its members seemed in agreement that the Pantigo Place site was the best of two proposed for the satellite emergency center. The other is part of a 45-acre parcel on Stephen Hand’s Path in Wainscott that is also owned by the town and located near two soccer fields and a pair of basketball courts.

“Geographically it’s more centrally located” and is close to the town’s most densely populated area in Springs, Councilman Peter Van Scoyoc said of the Little League site Wednesday.

Robert Chaloner, the hospital’s president and chief executive, presented the emergency facility idea to town board members in October. He asked that one of the sites be selected by the end of the year so that the project would be eligible for a $10 million state Department of Health grant.

Chaloner said that to apply for the state funding a site must first be identified.

Van Scoyoc said that if the board approves the Little League site, which is near Town Hall, but later finds another more suitable location, he expected the state to be flexible about a change. He and other board members expressed concerns about additional traffic and a traffic study was not expected to be completed by the end of the year.

A resolution to name the Little League property as the site for now is expected to be considered by the board at its Dec. 15 meeting.

Eric Schantz, senior planner for the town, said the displaced Pantigo Place ballfields could be relocated to the Wainscott recreation site.

The satellite would cost between $35 million and $45 million to construct, and the remainder of the money would be raised by the hospital, Chaloner said.

Included would be an emergency room, radiology services and a half dozen new doctors. No patients would be admitted for treatment.

Chaloner said East Hampton residents have to travel 14 miles to get to Southampton Hospital for emergency and urgent care, and that each year about 17,000 of the hospital’s patients come from East Hampton.

It would take about two years for construction if the project is approved.

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