Several Greenport residents spoke at a public hearing of the Greenport Village Planning Board last night expressing their views about a proposed three-story hotel to be built at the corner of Front and Third Streets in the village.
The main concerns about the project, which has already received six variances from the Zoning Board of Appeals, are the lack of parking and its location at a busy intersection downtown.
Pete Harris of Greenport said that the 16-room hotel and 60-seat restaurant would cause a “logistical nightmare” and questioned the ability of the business to accept deliveries without disrupting traffic flow in the area. He also doubted that there would be enough parking to accommodate the increased number of cars.
Zoning Board of Appeals member John Saladino, who spoke as a private citizen at the hearing, supports the project and said that disrupting the ferry line would be a mild inconvenience to a corporation and customers that are mostly outside the village.
“It enhances a fallow corner,” Saladino said. “A corner that’s been fallow for 10 years, 12 years. It’s the gateway to Greenport. Right now we have an institutional chain link fence there.”
Chatty Allen said that although she initially disapproved of the project, she was now in favor of it after watching the builders work with the village to address concerns. “It’s a beautiful project,” she said. “I don’t feel you should penalize this project with the parking.” She pointed out that the Blue Canoe and American Legion don’t provide parking.
James Olinkiewicz, owner of the old Meson Ole property across the street from the proposed hotel/restaurant said that the project would be a good add for the village and suggested limiting street parking to one or two hours along the corridor.
The board closed the public hearing but took no action on the application.
Also on the agenda for public comment were the site plan application for a new restaurant at the old Blue Canoe location and a request by Marie Eiffel LLC to open a cafe within the movie theater building.
The Marie Eiffel plan was approved; more discussion was found necessary for the restaurant to address the number of toilet facilities, a discrepancy in the number of seats and handicap access.