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Sep 8, 2008 3:43 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

County selects developer for industrial park

Sep 8, 2008 3:43 PM

A Melville-based development firm has been selected by Suffolk County to build the Hampton Business and Technology Park, a 53-acre business and technology center located at Francis S. Gabreski Airport in Westhampton.

Rechler Equity Partners, a commercial and industrial real estate developer that owns more than 100 properties on Long Island, will develop the property, according to a press release issued by Suffolk County Executive Steve Levy’s office.

The park will total 485,000 square feet and will include a 145-room hotel with conference capabilities. The complex will be located on the westernmost portion of Gabreski Airport.

Suffolk County Executive Steve Levy said that ground is slated to be broken on the project in spring 2009.

According to the press release, the business park is expected to be composed of film, television, and digital media companies, as well as businesses involved in homeland security, alternative energy, and green-research and development. The county has not secured any leases for the complex as of yet.

“The Town of Southampton is excited that Rechler Equity Partners will play a lead role in making this collaborative vision a reality,” said Southampton Supervisor Linda Kabot in a county press release. “The Hampton Business and Technology Park will be an economic rejuvenator for both the South Fork and all of Suffolk County. Its opening will help Long Island reclaim its place at the forefront of America’s industrial and technological development.”

Mr. Levy said in the press release that the park could create anywhere between 600 and 700 jobs. The park is also anticipated to generate $7 million in rental revenue for Suffolk County over the next 10 years.

“It represents the fruits of a lot of labor between the county, the town, and the local community,” said Hank Beck, co-chair of Citizens Advisory Committee West. “Everyone had a hand in seeing that their interests were honored.”

Mr. Beck went on to say that he believes the park will be a boon for the surrounding community, especially businesses on Main Street in Westhampton Beach.

The park, Mr. Beck believes, will help businesses in the surrounding area stay open year-round.

Mr. Beck noted that there is a provision in the plan for the park that mandates that no retail businesses built in the park will compete with existing retail businesses in the village.

In the past, area residents have expressed concerns about the park causing increased traffic in the area.

Mr. Beck said he does not see traffic being a problem because the majority of those coming to the park will be traveling from Sunrise Highway onto County Road 31.

“The road may be widened to facilitate left-hand turning,” Mr. Beck said.

Mr. Levy, however, said no such plans are in place.

The county has been reviewing plans for the technology park since July. Rechler Equity Partners was selected from three other companies who responded to the county’s request for proposals.

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So Mr. Levy, what happened to all the other proposals that were submitted by mostly local East End businesses hoping to expand at the Hampton Business & Technology Park at Gabreski Airport. We were all told at the informational meeting held in Yaphank this past year that "all proposals were being considered", when it was pointed out by my brother Tom that the lengthy application package was clearly intended for larger scale developers. Why couldn't we have been told the real plan (to bring in one ...more
By Weprint (1), Westhampton on Sep 9, 08 10:36 AM
Weprint - Rechler et al is a big contributor to Frieds of Levy and other political campaign committes. Need I say more?
By North of Highway (280), Westhampton Beach on Sep 9, 08 12:01 PM
Industrial park? Kind of like "affordable housing" and "smart growth" all oxymoronic and unattainable.
By William Rodney (561), southampton on Sep 9, 08 3:33 PM
It seems that we-print is suffering from sour grapes. Rechler is a class act capable of building a quality product that will be a huge boost to our year round economy. Was we-print or we-prints friends capable of developing 485,000 sf and bringing that many jobs to the area? Did they have the financial where-with-all? Did they compete in the RFP process, and submit a completed proposal?

North of the Highway's point about contributions fails to point out that all the big boys/girls and ...more
By gordie howe (55), hockeytown usa on Sep 10, 08 11:29 AM
$22,500 over the last few of years to various candidates isn't chickenfeed;
but yes, you're right - everyone does it - like Sheltair, LI Jet, etc - yes, it is the way things work.
This project does hold great potential for the local area - lets make sure the local area does indeed benefit from it and air traffic does not increase. I've lived across from Gabreski for 30 years and after all the promises this one may actually happen. Gabreski is a potential gold mine - lets hope be benefit ...more
By North of Highway (280), Westhampton Beach on Sep 10, 08 2:06 PM

Does the Town review applicants/tenants on a County project? Howe?
By William Rodney (561), southampton on Sep 10, 08 5:18 PM
Mr. Bill....

The County ceded its right as lead agency to the Town. That was part of the deal that was brokered to get this going.

I agree with North of Highway - lets hope that this gold mine is a benefit to the local community and the greater area - and the developer (and future tenants)helps the community keep air traffic down.
By gordie howe (55), hockeytown usa on Sep 10, 08 9:35 PM