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Nixed East Quogue land preservation could mean homes, golf course

The East Quogue Village Green features a playground,

The East Quogue Village Green features a playground, fountains, a gazebo and plenty of open space. (April 16, 2012) Credit: Erin Geismar

A developer plans to turn 440 acres in East Quogue into 82 vacation houses and a golf course, after talks between Southampton Town and Suffolk County officials on preserving the land failed to produce an acceptable price.

The project still needs approval from Southampton and the Pine Barrens Commission. The first public hearing on the proposal, called The Hills at East Quogue, will be on Aug. 27, said Steve Adelson, principal of the Discovery Land Company.

The Scottsdale, Ariz., firm acquired the land about three months ago. Adelson said the company had been in talks with the town and county to sell the land. “They weren’t willing to match the price paid on an adjacent acquisition they did a few years back,” he said.

Under the vacation house-golf course proposal, 280 acres of the site would be left as open space. A portion of the property is a former gravel mine.

Michael Meldman, chairman and chief executive of Discovery Land Company, said in a statement the project will add to the economy and tax base without impacting schools or services.

“I anticipate that for 100 percent of our residents, this will be a second or third home,” he said.

Jennifer Garvey, Southampton deputy chief of staff, said a purchase of the land by the town’s Community Preservation Fund is still possible.

“I don’t believe preservation is off the table,” she said.

The approval the company is seeking for the site to be designated as a planned development district requires a supermajority of the five-member board.

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