Pop-Up Gets Nod for Sign; Main Street Plan Hits Snag

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Architect’s rendering of Laura Grenning’s building at 17 Washington Street after its makeover as a Hudson Grace store.

A “blade sign” reading “Hudson Grace” in vertical lettering will appear outside the former location of the Grenning Gallery at 17 Washington Street, following a decision of the Sag Harbor Board of Historic Preservation and Architectural Review on February 13 to approve its design.

The board held off on clearing a new paint scheme for the building’s brick façade until alternative shades are presented at the board’s meeting on February 27.

The case was one of 20 applications for “certificates of appropriateness” on the meeting’s published agenda. The board approved 11 of them, tabled six and accepted the withdrawal of two.

In the case of 17 Washington Street, Steve Uhlarik, senior project manager for Crate & Barrel, told the board his company had bought Hudson Grace, which he said was a predominantly West Coast home décor chain, and planned to open a “pop-up” branch for the coming summer season in Laura Grenning’s building on April 1.

The company plans to mount the 7.625-square-foot vertical sign on the eastern edge of the façade. It would be visible to oncoming pedestrians and drivers.

Board member Judith Long objected to the additional plan to paint the brick portions of the façade white. “White brick is not Sag Harbor,” she said. “It’s a red brick town. White brick to me says ‘Palm Beach.’ I’d be dead set against it being painted white.”

Board member David Berridge said he had no problem with white brick, but Bethany Deyermond called for toning down the proposed shade of white, which Mr. Uhlarik said was called “extra white sun.”

Among the tabled applications was that of William Richmond-Watson for the historically significant property at 241 Main Street, where the main house was built in the 18th century. Mr. Richmond-Watson wants to tear down an existing cottage, which is not a historically significant structure, at the rear of the property, and replace it with a combined pool house, garage and storage building.

The proposal, which the board first discussed in January, ran into a brick wall when neighbor Lynn St. John’s attorney, Tiffany Scarlato, referred the board to a deed restriction that was imposed in 2018 forbidding windows, doors and recreational uses on the east side of the structure.

Architect Todd Nagy’s plan — which board member David Berridge called “quite strange” because of its mix of proposed uses — calls for two garage doors on the east side. That’s “not allowed,” Ms. Scarlato noted. The board’s attorney, Elizabeth Vail, agreed.

Ms. Scarlato also said it had been Mr. St. John’s and another neighbor’s understanding that any future structure “was going to remain the same” as the cottage, which the village recognizes as a habitable dwelling space. It used to be the only structure on a property known as 8 Palmer Terrace, but in 2018, the Planning Board and Zoning Board of Appeals made decisions that allowed that parcel to be divided among 237 Main Street, Mr. St. John’s property, and Mr. Richmond-Watson’s property, to which the cottage was annexed.

“I don’t see any sleeping quarters” in the plan for the new, multi-use pool house, Ms. Scarlato said. “I have a little trouble believing that’s what’s going to happen.”

During a long discussion, the board members agreed that Mr. Richmond-Watson would have to come back to the board with an entirely new plan — if it could be prepared in time for the February 27 meeting of the board — that fixes the garage-door problem, which Chairman Dean Gomolka and Mr. Berridge said might mean making the garage a separate structure that might connect with a driveway off Palmer Terrace instead of Main Street.

Other issues Mr. Gomolka said must be addressed include the need for grading to keep runoff from flowing onto the neighboring property and a landscaping plan that shows the precise spacing of proposed plantings so that adequate screening is provided.

Mr. Richmond-Watson, in discussing the project with the board, noted that his plans, including the annexation of the cottage, have been going through the municipal review process for more than six years.

Also at the February 13 session, the board continued its informal discussion of Hara Amdemariam’s plan for the renovation and expansion of the Greek Revival house at 42 Suffolk Street, including the addition of a swimming pool and extensive new landscaping.

An application for a certificate of appropriateness has not yet been filed for the proposal.

Among the topics discussed were six-pane windows that were found to include original glass and will be retained. Commenting on the overall fenestration plan, the board’s historic consultant, Zachary Studenroth, said, “There’s something about the size and number of windows” in the proposed addition that the designers “should also consider simplifying.”

He also suggested “revisiting all those shutters.” He noted that the house underwent extensive renovation in 2005 and that “basically” the front staircase and front bedrooms “are the only historic parts of the house” that remain intact.

Among the applications approved at the February 13 meeting were those for:

• 123 Harrison Street for the construction of a retaining wall at the northeast corner of the property, a new driveway entry and off-street parking area, and regrading to manage water flow. The board agreed to grant a certificate of appropriateness after the property owner agreed to tweaks in his landscaping plan to better screen the property.

• 169 Jermain Avenue, where John Barrows plans to remove existing siding down to the sheathing and install new siding. There remained some question about the siding material to be used, which will be resolved by an inspection. The board agreed to have Ms. Vail draft an approval resolution.

• 21 Wooded Path, where Andrea Grover plans to install a solar electrical system on the roof.

• 38 Meadowlark Way for the extension of a deck that was previously approved.

• 17 Milton Street, for the installation of a 16-by-36-foot gunite pool.

• 57 Palmer Terrace, where Julie and Richard Borge plan to install a pool, pool house, patio and plantings.

• 6 Meadowlark Lane, where Philip Pape plans to install a balcony/deck over an existing metal roof.

• 47 Howard Street, where Ethan Fierstein plans to renovate an existing house with cosmetic changes including a cedar shingle roof and removing a pergola, shed and glacial erratic rock to make room for a 10-foot-by-17-foot pool.

• Temple Adas Israel for its landscaping plan for the property after a building addition, approved earlier this winter, is completed.

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