JUNE 19, 2000
To members of the Pine Point Residents Association and others on the Pine Point Mailing List:
PLEASE ATTEND A VERY IMPORTANT NEIGHBORHOOD MEETING NEXT WEDNESDAY, JUNE 24TH, 6:30 AT ENGINE 4 FIRE STATION. And please spread the word.
PLAN TO ATTEND THE TOWN COUNCIL MEETING ON JULY 15th at 7:00 FOR A CRITICAL PUBLIC HEARING ON THE FUTURE OF DEPOT ST., OUR PUBLIC ROAD TO THE BEACH.
As you may know, the Town Manager has been meeting with the Lighthouse Motel owners for the past several weeks negotiating a land exchange. The last time this idea was considered was in 2004-05 when the owners wanted to convert the motel to five or six high-end condos. They withdrew their proposal after several neighborhood meetings which concluded with general agreement on the plan for an attractive building design. The issue has not been considered since until these recent negotiations.
Unlike five years ago, which called for an even exchange of land the motel needed to add frontage to their plan, this is not. The 2005 plan moved most of the parking for their condos to the back of the building. The current plan is not an even exchange. The Town would deed the entire 50 foot +/- paved public street to the beachfront in return for the 21 foot +/- parking strip the motel owns across the public street. The motel currently owns 18-24 inches of land in front of their units.
IF THIS IS APPROVED BY THE COUNCIL, THE PUBLIC WILL NEVER AGAIN BE ABLE TO DRIVE DOWN THAT ROAD TO THE BEACHFRONT, INCLUDING DURING THE OFF-SEASON WHEN THE MOTEL IS CLOSED. THEY WILL OWN THE STREET WHICH HAS BEEN IN EXISTENCE FOR OVER 100 YEARS.
20 citizens addressed the Town Council last Wednesday when this appeared on the agenda. The Association representatives have strongly opposed both the plan itself and the process which has excluded public input until last Wednesday’s Council meeting at which the vote was to be taken. The plan was officially released just last Friday, the 12th, then appeared on the Council’s agenda for a single-vote action the following Wednesday. New information was presented that evening leaving no time for the public to respond. This included a public turnaround which would use the town-owned land acquired from the Beachwalk developer. All 20 speakers expressed similar opposition, some of whom have not been affiliated with our group but spoke passionately about the importance of this road. No one spoke in support of it, other than Town Council members.
Town Councilor Rancourt was successful in a motion delaying the vote until July 15th at which time the Council will hold a public hearing followed by their vote. They could approve the plan or take other action. We are hopeful they will take other action, such as referring it to study as the Council did in 2005, or take time to explore alternatives and invite the public in the process.
The Association has never been absolutely opposed to a land exchange. We have simply wanted to ensure it was of significant benefit to the Town and was decided with input from residents, citizens, abutters, town officials and the motel owners.
IF THE RESIDENTS OF PINE POINT AND THE CITIZENS OF SCARBOROUGH WANT THIS PROCESS SLOWED DOWN, THE LAND SWAP CAREFULLY STUDIED, AND MAXIMUM PUBLIC INPUT ALLOWED, THEY WILL NEED TO ACT QUICKLY. A MAJORITY OF THE COUNCIL INDICATED THEY SUPPORT THE PLAN BUT HAVE SAID THEY WILL KEEP AN OPEN MIND. SO THEY NEED TO HEAR FROM PEOPLE. AND THEY OUGHT TO HEAR FROM PEOPLE WHO HAVE NOT ADDRESSED THEM BEFORE.
A delegation from our group is meeting with the Town Manager Monday to discuss some ideas for alternatives, which the manager invited. He has stated that the plan is “not perfect” and he’s offered to speak with anyone who wants to call his office.
Please spend some time reviewing the information on our website so you are informed of what has happened and could happen. IT MAY BE DIFFICULT TO BELIEVE, BUT IN 26 DAYS THE 120 YEAR-OLD PUBLIC ROAD TO OUR BEAUTIFUL BEACH COULD BE GIVEN AWAY TO A SEASONAL COMMERCIAL BUSINESS.
Please forward this email and ask friends and neighbors to get involved. And please join your neighbors next Wednesday to learn more.
Representatives of the Pine Point Residents Association,
Judy, Sue, John, Harold, Jack, Elaine, Judy
The “Pine Point Residents Association” is an informal group of citizens who gather to deliberate local issues and present Position Statements to government officials. We only represent our members’ collective positions. The Pine Point Ladies Auxiliary, Friends of Pine Point, Pillsbury Shores Association, and the various local established homeowners associations are different organizations. The Group also maintains a confidential e-mail list to share information with members and non-members who request mailings. We do not release the addresses of members on this list unless requested or authorized to do so by our members. Anyone who wants to be removed from this list can reply and request so in the subject line.