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Oct 26, 2011 11:39 AMPublication: The Southampton Press

Southampton Village Drafts Law To Allow New Supermarket

Oct 26, 2011 11:39 AM

The Southampton Village Board is considering new legislation that would allow a supermarket to be built at the site of a shuttered automobile dealership on Hampton Road near its intersection with Flying Point Road.

Village trustees say the move would satisfy call from residents for another grocery store and spruce up one of the gateways to the village. At the same time, the measure would prohibit development as large as the proposed Tuckahoe Main Street project in nearby Tuckahoe that locals—and the village itself—resoundingly objected to last year.

The village’s proposed local law would alter the zoning code to allow supermarkets as an acceptable use, with a special exception permit, on parcels zoned highway business. Any application for a supermarket would need to win Village Board approval.

The supermarket would be limited in size to 10,000 square feet to 20,000 square feet. That’s about half the size of the proposed 40,000-square-foot King Kullen in the Tuckahoe Main Street development, a plan that also called for additional retail shops and restaurants and which the village formally objected to, on the belief that it would draw shoppers away from village businesses. The developer behind the Tuckahoe plan, Robert Morrow, unsuccessfully sought a special zoning designation, or planned development district, from the Southampton Town Board to build a shopping center with more than 100,000 square feet of commercial space on County Road 39, near Magee Street, in Tuckahoe.

Because spot zoning is not allowed, the village law would apply to all village lots zoned highway business with street frontage on County Road 39 or 39A or Flying Point Road, with a lot area of at least 60,000 square feet. The village has nine properties zoned highway business. However, Village Mayor Mark Epley pinpointed the former Buick and Cadillac dealership and Mercedes-Benz service center that fronts Flying Point Road at the village’s border with Water Mill as the specific parcel that inspired the legislation. The family that owns that property, the Glennons, approached him about two years ago, he said, with plans to build a grocery store at that site, a use that would not be allowed under current zoning.

“There’s a size limitation, 10,000 to 20,000 square feet, so you can’t put a monster grocery store in or tiny pop-ups. It’s an interesting piece. It’s designed for a medium-sized store,” Mr. Epley said of the proposed law.

The mayor said he has also been approached by Joe Gurrera, owner of Citarella, a gourmet food market company based in Manhattan, about opening a Citarella in the village. Sites discussed in those conversations, however, included the RiteAid on Nugent Street, the vacant, former Saks Fifth Avenue building on Hampton Road and a vacant building at 200 North Sea Road, the mayor said.

“You can’t do spot zoning,” Mr. Epley said. “We stepped back and said between Tuckahoe Main Street and the Glennons, we need to study grocery stores and we need to study this need and how we can help meet the need in the village.”

No developer has approached him with specific plans for a supermarket, Mr. Epley said.

The Village Board on Tuesday night referred the legislation, which was drafted by Village Attorney Richard DePetris, to the Village Planning Commission, which will consider how the law would fit into the village’s Master Plan and how it would affect the village.

The village used to have three supermarkets, but two of those have been replaced by the RiteAid and CVS pharmacies. The village now has one grocery store, Waldbaum’s on Jagger Lane. It also has smaller grocery-like businesses, such as Schmidt’s Market on North Sea Road.

Village trustees spoke favorably of the law on Tuesday night.

“The public has made it quite clear that what they wanted was another supermarket, but what they didn’t like about that was all the extra add-ons that came along with it,” Trustee Richard Yastrzemski said, referring to Tuckahoe Main Street.

“That’s actually one of the best corners,” Trustee Nancy McGann said of the old auto dealership, noting the traffic flow. One of her main objections to Tuckahoe Main Street had been that it would steer traffic through village side streets. Ms. McGann also said that although the site is in a highway business zoning district, which means it is not intended for a large flow of in and out traffic, “we are in desperate need of an additional supermarket and we have to figure out what’s the best neighborhood to put it in so that it doesn’t really have an effect on the people living there, and that is a good location for it.”

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This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By johnj (1024), Westhampton on Oct 26, 11 1:56 PM
Perfect for a Trader Joe's
By johnj (1024), Westhampton on Oct 26, 11 1:58 PM
I 100% agree. We NEED a Trader Joe's out here!!!
By 2000lands (1), Southampton on Oct 27, 11 9:40 AM
To small for trader joes.

Citarella is drooling for sure.

Maybe too big for them though. Schmidts would be done if that happened. Probably 3-5 other deli / seafood shops too
By C Law (354), Water Mill on Oct 26, 11 4:27 PM
I don't think its going to be a very popular destination for shoppers. Just getting there and out is going to offer few alternatives and crowd the streets around there...a highway merger with a light, old hampon road or flying point road are going to be the only way in and out that seem reasonable.

A supermarket would be better where the larger auto dealerships are. Also kind of a small surface area for a meaningfull store that would give consumers and residents a true alternative as ...more
By V.Tomanoku (790), southampton on Oct 26, 11 5:35 PM
1 member liked this comment
SO, exactly WHY can't Waldbaum's afford to invest in infrastructure?

Yeah, "entitlement".

That's what I thought...
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Oct 26, 11 7:43 PM
The word supermarket applied to this sounds rediculous... After the protectionist locale businessman get done with the plan it will be another Cromers at best. In my opinion you can have both land preservation and some modern destinations in our town. The Stop and Shop in H.B. and the King Kullen in Bridge are jammed packed with happy customers everyday. Do you expect us to go back to the IGA's of the 70s... please
maybe we could all drive our smart cars down to the well to get some water for ...more
By joe hampton (3461), south hampton on Oct 26, 11 8:17 PM
1 member liked this comment
won't it create a traffic nightmare.. remember big trucks will be servicing the store.
got to be a better location for a supermarket.
By harbor (415), East Hampton on Oct 26, 11 8:21 PM
1 member liked this comment
What would you suggest harbor? let me guess patchogue . There is already traffic, some people want selection. you cant keep this place a protected market where only the few make $ off a small selection of over priced merchandise for ever.
By 27dan (2854), Southampton on Nov 2, 11 4:00 PM
Well, how about a tiny Trader Joes?
By elliot (254), sag harbor on Oct 27, 11 11:16 AM
My first blush reaction is that the Mayor has come up with a fantastic idea. Looking forward to further details, but this plan sounds like a terrific compromise between those who do not want mega-stores moving in and those who believe there is a need for another grocery store.
By dagdavid (646), southampton on Oct 27, 11 11:55 AM
EVERYBODY wants a Trader Joe's out here. The prices are great. And think of all the gas money it would save.

The Trader Joe's in Lake Grove was originally pretty small, but everyone loved it. Now they're in a bigger building, but the original wasn't big at all.
By btdt (449), water mill on Oct 27, 11 2:04 PM
1 member liked this comment
Whole foods in lake grove across the street from Trader Joes, Now thats a store!
By joe hampton (3461), south hampton on Oct 27, 11 3:46 PM
2 members liked this comment
Southampton village certainly needs a second food market, but one with affordable prices, not everyone is rich.
By goldenrod (505), southampton on Oct 27, 11 5:06 PM
1 member liked this comment
With all of the hardworking small retailers in this town, this move shows just how out of touch our elected officials are. Bring more big box stores here, where the profits go to a large public company, and choke out the small businesses here. Soon enough, County Rd. 39 will be Route 58 in Riverhead. Good move, I am so glad this happened on the eve of election day!
By Watermillguy (1), Water Mill on Oct 29, 11 2:01 PM
1 member liked this comment
Village elections were held in June.Sorry.
By V.Tomanoku (790), southampton on Oct 30, 11 9:56 PM
its like not 1948 anymore you know....
By joe hampton (3461), south hampton on Nov 2, 11 1:18 AM
My vote is for a "Wild by Nature" store
By SagHarborBob (91), Sag Harbor on Oct 31, 11 7:08 AM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By Bel (86), southampton on Oct 31, 11 3:21 PM
Watermillguy ...has an excellent point...one of the main reasons for "Occupy NY or other cities" is the control of the big corporations over US...here we will be just feeding the monster even more....more corporations more GREED, POWER...lets help the mom and pop ...maybe our politicians can send a posotive message to the world...set up an example FOR A CHANGE.....
By Bel (86), southampton on Oct 31, 11 3:25 PM
1 member liked this comment
Magee Street was such a bad idea. Trader Joe's would be great but I hope that Schmidts would not be adversely affected. It is hard to juggle between local merchants, good prices and large selections. However, the traffic by Flying Point/Hampton Road is already horrendous and it will get worse.
By AFB (31), NYC/SH on Nov 2, 11 12:52 PM
I don't know what the answer is; seems like Southampton village is caught between a rock and a hard place. As much as we would like to see another supermarket in the village we have to admit #1 it is a business and a business, such as a supermarket, must have the needed size to be profitiable. To limit the size of a "supermarket" to 10,000 or even 20,000 is ludicrous. The men who run such business must have been laughing all the way out to the parking lot after the meeting with the mayor.
By summertime (589), summerfield fl on Nov 3, 11 3:45 PM
1 member liked this comment