The Hamptons are in dire need of affordable housing. A local leader is ready to step into the lurch.
Adam Potter, chairman of Friends of Bay Street, is proposing a 79-unit affordable housing complex along Bridge and Rose streets, the Sag Harbor Express reported. The development would span five lots across 1.4 acres at 11, 12, and 23 Bridge Street, and 8 and 12 Rose Street.
The project is being designed by BHC Architects of Melville. The three-story, $70 million development would span 106,000 square feet, including 30,000 square feet for commercial use.
The main building would be shaped like a horseshoe, surrounding a courtyard. There would be a separate one-story commercial building in the middle.
As for the units, there would be 62 one-bedroom units and 17 two-bedroom units. Under HUD’s income guidelines, the one-bedroom units would rent for a maximum of $1,542 per month and the two-bedroom units would be limited to $1,847 per month. All of the units would remain affordable in perpetuity.
The commercial elements of the proposal would help businesses that may soon be displaced, Potter said. The sale of 22 Long Island Avenue and potential sale of 2 Main Street leave both at risk of demolition.
The Long Island Avenue purchase, backed by Stephen Ross, is intended for a new theater. According to Potter, none of the investors in that project are involved in the affordable housing plan.
Affordable housing has become an increasingly urgent issue as workers and locals have found themselves priced out of the Hamptons. Sag Harbor passed three measures earlier this week, designed to encourage affordable developments.
One roadblock is bureaucracy. Once the proposal for Potter’s project is submitted, it could be quite some time before the project comes to life. The village board will get to weigh in on the project, as well as the planning board and potentially both the Zoning Board of Appeals and the Board of Historic Preservation and Architectural Review.
Potter said the construction would take about 18 months. Village officials foresee a multi-year approval process, putting the dozens of affordable units at least a few years away.
[Sag Harbor Express] — Holden Walter-Warner