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Last Chance for Residents To Sound Off on Canoe Place Inn Project

Comment period closes on SEQRA review, those zoning change will be revisted at Jan. 28 meeting.

Credit: File photo
Credit: File photo
Thursday marks the last day that residents can file written comments with the Southampton Board over the controversial Canoe Place Inn project in Hampton Bays.

As it stands, the project calls for restoration the historic Canoe Place Inn, in exchange for a zone change to build 40 town homes on the canal property. The developers have also offered to preserve open space in another area of town. 

At a hearing last month, community members debated the merits of preserving Canoe Place Inn in exchange for density. With numerous residents speaking both in support and opposition of the project, the town board voted to close the State Environmental Quality Review portion of the hearing, though they left it open for a 30-day comment period.

The zone change portion of the hearing was left open and will be revisited at a hearing that is set for Jan. 28 meeting at Southampton Town Hall at 6 p.m. 

On its Facebook page, the group, "Save Tide Runners," offered a sample letter to residents to send to the town board, noting that businesses along the waterfront are vital to the Hampton Bays economy.

"Hampton Bays is at a crossroads. We are experiencing the beginnings of a hamlet rejuvenation as evidenced by the success and popularity of local businesses such as Tide Runners (which was forced to close losing over 100 jobs and a Local Icon), 1 North Steak House (which was forced to move to the East Quogue), The Canal Cafe, Rumba, & Cowfish," the letter reads. 

"We have the opportunity to improve an already thriving commercial corridor along the Canal which is clearly proposed and encouraged by all three of the Hampton Bays Corridor strategic plans. However, this cannot be realized through the use of an economically segregated private development," the letter states. "I urge you to say no to rezoning the Shinnecock Canal east for private residential development."

Patch wants to know: How would you like to see the developers amend their plan? Comment below.
b January 08, 2014 at 09:52 PM
North One was never "water front" dining unless you were outside the building or in the kitchen. They are NOT located in East Quogue and they have a much nicer larger building that they now own. I haven't heard them complain, why is Save TideRunners speaking for them? How are business that will be open for part of the year a better addition to our community then those that are open all year? Those 100 jobs that were lost were part time jobs...surely that should be noted. Building establishments that provide jobs year round would be more of an addition. As far as a local icon, that is a matter of personal opinion, not a fact. Tide Runners was a tenant. The owner did not renew their lease. This shouldn't have been a shock or surprise to the tenant, didn't they understand that they were never guaranteed anything?
richard gise January 09, 2014 at 07:31 AM
Sadly this beautiful area around our canal may be destroyed if this project is approved. An area where many of us grew up fishing for snapper and flounder is a rare and unique piece of landscape found anywhere in the U.S. If it's lost to private development, it's gone forever. The beauty that we have taken for granted every day will be forever changed. I believe the town should do everything it can to save the area from any development and buy the land with Southampton preservation funds (and possibly in conjunction with Suffolk county). At the very least, no zoning changes should be permitted ! These developers knew what the zoning laws were when they purchased the property.
b January 09, 2014 at 08:39 AM
While it sounds great to say that they should buy the property it isn't a realistic suggestion. As far as fishing, you are aware that there will still be fishing in all the same locations along the canal that there are now? People don't fish on that strip of property, they drink eat and possibly by tackle.
Penelope Jayaswal January 09, 2014 at 11:58 AM
Although I like the overall project, I don't like the density of the 40 units on that side of the canal. Why can't the town compromise with the owners of the property and have them build only 20 on the east side of the canal and build the rest on the west side, the site of the Canoe Place Inn, where there is a lot more property.
Gloria Ryan January 09, 2014 at 03:16 PM
I, too, believe that the developers should build the town houses on the west side of the canal. It would satisfy the residents of the east side and alleviate their fears of the sanitation system. What is wrong with part-time occupancy? Would you like waterfront dining in the cold weather?
Jim January 10, 2014 at 06:56 AM
Build a catering hall or restaurant where the CPI is now. Name it CPI if you want, Whatever! Build the townhouses behind it. No one is going to buy those overpriced condos anyway. Leave Tide runners there and build some more stores/restaurants on the east side with a walkway along the canal so its still accessible to the people. How hard is this? All these groups and greedy developers should be shown the door and let the town purchase the property and bring in a developer that cares about this town and its future.
b January 10, 2014 at 08:32 AM
Jim you are aware that the town can't operate for profit businesses, right? So once they buy the property, that isn't for sale, what do they do then? Tide Runners is gone. The property was sold, the lease has ended and the new owners have stated that it isn't a good use of their property. If Tide Runners wanted to stay there for all eternity, they needed to purchase the property when it was for sale. They didn't. Why don't they move down the canal to the old Cruiser Club? Not that I think our hamlet wouldn't be just fine without the place. The neighbors sure are celebrating the peace and quiet.
Gloria Ryan January 10, 2014 at 09:28 AM
b I believe Tide Runners were looking to buy the property, but were told that the zoning could never be changed. Bring in the "big bucks" and all is possible.
b January 10, 2014 at 07:46 PM
Why would the zoning there be any different then anywhere else? Not to mention, why would they need the zoning to change since they are using it under current zoning. What would have changed? This property has been sold at least once before while the establishment was Tide Runners and they didn't buy it. One way or the other, as a tenant you are a paying guest. The old cruiser club is for sale, they must be looking into that since there would be no zoning change.

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