A mixed-use development that includes 79 units of affordable housing is going up in the Hamptons village of Sag Harbor, and some residents are suing (and, in at least one case, might cry). The group that filed the lawsuit, Save Sag Harbor, claims that it isn’t against affordable housing but simply has concerns about the project’s environmental consequences and the lack of parking in the area. (This is a familiar line.) Or, as one resident put it on NextDoor, “Yes to an affordable housing development. No to this retail stuff. We’re gonna look like Port Jefferson, but with high end shops. I almost want to cry.”
As the East Hampton Star reported, the group filed the suit last week to oppose parts of affordable-housing legislation that passed this summer that allows for larger, mixed-use developments. The Sag Harbor town center project developed by Conifer Realty would contain 79 affordable-housing units and 30,000 square feet of retail space; units would rent for a maximum of $1,542 for a one-bedroom and $1,847 for a two-bedroom. At the time it was approved, many locals supported the plan — Sag Harbor, like the rest of the Hamptons, is in desperate need of affordable housing so that those who work for all the rich people can actually live there.
But Save Sag Harbor, along with the seven residents who are plaintiffs in the suit, argues that the law doesn’t properly consider environmental factors and would affect quality of life in the village. “This development would be larger than anything built in Sag Harbor since the watch-case factory in the 19th century,” Save Sag Harbor co-director Hilary Loomis said in a press release. Not the watch-case factory!