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Plan for 12 Sag Harbor cottages clears first hurdle

After three years in front of the East Hampton Town planning board, an applicant seeking to revamp a run-down Sag Harbor motel has reason to breathe a sigh of relief.

David Reiner, the owner of the Sag Harbor Cottages, a motel on Route 114, plans to tear down the existing motel and replace it with 12 cottages, a pool and pool house, administrative office, two sheds and a pavilion. The plan came with some opposition from environmental groups and initial hesitation from some planning board members because of its location adjacent to wetlands and a native white-pine forest not found elsewhere on Long Island.

On Wednesday, the board granted Reiner  a preliminary approval, said town planner Eric Schantz, provided Reiner would agree to a covenant that would put restrictions on future expansion.

Schantz said the board requested a 250-foot setback from the northern property line, which borders the pine forest that would restrict development from encroaching on the natural resources. The covenant would ensure nearly 3 acres of protected woodlands on the 6-acre site, Schantz said.

After the covenant is set, Schantz said the planning board will take a final vote on the application. It’s expected to be approved, he said.

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