Staten Island’s Pouch Camp to be saved from development?

January 04, 2010 04:02PM

The Richmond County Country Club and the New York Container Terminal
may save 120-acre Pouch Camp, which
is in danger of being sold to private developers. In one scenario, the
country club said it would sell its aging clubhouse, Flagg Place, to a
builder which would build homes on the nine-acre site. The country club
would then use the funds from the sale, which could total near $10 million,
to buy a portion of adjacent Pouch Camp for preservation. However this figure could fall far short of the $30 million estimated for preservation. Jim Devine,
president and CEO of New York Container Terminal, a full service container and general cargo handling facility on Staten Island, and a member of the
board of directors for the Greater New York Council of Boy Scouts, said
he wants to build a ship berth in the environmentally sensitive
Arlington Marsh. If this move is allowed, Devine said
he would purchase and preserve Pouch Camp’s freshwater wetland to offset the environmental impact. “The
goal here is, ultimately, to save Pouch Camp and to keep it as
pristine open space and we have to listen and entertain any proposal
that comes across our desk,” Assembly Member Michael Cusick, an advocate for the preservation of the site, said. Meanwhile, a spokesperson for the New York office of the Boy Scouts of America told The Real Deal last month that the non-profit wants commercial services firm Jones Lang LaSalle to help negotiate the sale of the development rights — or the entire property — composed of mostly undeveloped land in the tree-filled Greenbelt of Staten Island.

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