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May 27, 2009 3:44 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

East End Hospice clears hurdle to build Quiogue nursing center

May 27, 2009 3:44 PM

The Southampton Town Board paved the way for the construction of a full-service nursing facility in Quiogue by agreeing Tuesday night to change the town zoning code to permit the building of a hospice.

The Town Board’s unanimous decision to update the code will allow a full-service nursing facility, one that will be run by East End Hospice in Westhampton Beach, to be built on 5.5 acres in Quiogue, as long as the not-for-profit agency secures site plan approval and a special exception permit from the Town Planning Board.

Earlier this month, plans for the hospice were presented to the Town Board by Priscilla Ruffin, the president and chief executive officer of East End Hospice. The plans call for an eight-bed hospice to be built on the corner of Hampton Street and Meetinghouse Road, land that overlooks Aspatuck Creek.

Ground is not expected to be broken on the facility until at least 2010, said Kyle Collins of KPC Planning in Westhampton Beach, who has worked with East End Hospice on the application.

The updated zoning code mandates that hospices be built on lots greater than 60,000 square feet, or about 1.4 acres, have adequate buffers, have a design that blends in with the surrounding neighborhood, and not have parking out front, said Jefferson Murphree, the town’s planning and development administrator, during Tuesday night’s meeting.

At the same meeting, Ms. Ruffin said that due to changing demographics, fewer people are able to be cared for at home and need a full-service hospice facility. She said the situation has changed since East End Hospice opened its doors in the late 1980s.

“Less than 70 percent of our patients are able to be at home at the end,” Ms. Ruffin said, explaining that those people often have to be placed in one of the three hospitals on the East End, or at Calvary Hospital in The Bronx.

She and other staff at East End Hospice have been working on plans for the nursing center for nearly five years.

Dead Man’s Curve

Some residents living along Red Creek Road in Hampton Bays approached the Town Board Tuesday night to find out when the town intends to straighten out a dangerous bend in their road that has been nicknamed “Dead Man’s Curve.”

But Town Supervisor Linda Kabot informed them that the board decided against issuing a $100,000 bond that would have been used to reconfigure the road. Instead, Town Highway Superintendent Bill Masterson is tapping any available funds in his department’s budget to see if there is enough remaining to possibly straighten the road.

Board members will hold a work session to discuss potential solutions to Red Creek Road at some point in the future, according to Ms. Kabot. The date for the session has not yet been set.

“Mr. Masterson is going to go back and look over different designs to straighten out the road before we decide on any one thing,” said Town Councilman Chris Nuzzi, who is the board’s liaison to the highway department.

Vikki Hellis, who lives on Bergen Avenue, off of Red Creek Road, said the town should not straighten out the curve. Instead, she said that highway workers should simply regrade the road.

But Leo Somma, who lives immediately off of the curve on Red Creek Road, said Ms. Hellis is only “representing herself, not the community,” with her request. He presented the Town Board Tuesday night with a petition containing 33 signatures that requests that the town straighten out the road.

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Hospice is such a wonderful program. The nurses are just amazing! I hope this goes through quickly so our loved ones will benefit. Thank You Hospice for caring.
By squeaky (291), hampton bays on May 28, 09 12:58 PM
A road that is dangerous is put on hold..while the Flander duck gets a park?? What is wrong with our values?
By BeachGal (72), Hampton Bays on May 28, 09 3:57 PM
East End Hospice is a blessing. This will help all families of the East End. Bless you EEH!
By gordie howe (55), hockeytown usa on May 31, 09 7:26 PM