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Brookhaven Seeks to Buy Blue Point Property for Open Space Use

Town purchase will permit 'passive' park elements and not 'active' use such as a skateboard park.

Blue Point could soon be home to one of the largest open areas in Brookhaven Town as a councilman is advocating a town purchase of 17 acres along Maple Street, once known as the Kurt Weiss Greenhouse/Scro property.

But while most residents favor a park effort, not all are in agreement to the exact type of park should be created. The Blue Point Civic Association is holding an informational meeting on November 13 at the James Wilson Young Middle School, beginning at 7 p.m., to discuss why the site should be an ‘active’ park rather than a ‘passive’ park.

Initially the land was going to be bought from the current owner by both Suffolk County and Brookhaven Town with potential use as an ‘active’ park, which could include a skateboard park, playing fields, a community garden area, a concert gazebo, memorial garden, walking and biking paths and even a community center.

But then Brookhaven Town Councilman Tim Mazzei spearheaded a town-only effort for Brookhaven to buy the land using open space funds. Such use will only allow a ‘passive’ park which could feature walking trails and possibly a gazebo and benches.

“The residents told me they don’t want skateboard parks and favor a passive park,” Mazzei told Patch in a phone interview, adding he hopes to have signed contracts within two months and have the park open by next Spring.

“I was also concerned about whether the county would have the funds to do the park purchase and create and maintain the park,” he added.

Suffolk Legislator Rob Calarco, who was heading up the county’s role in the initial park partnership, commended Mazzei’s action.

“I applaud him for doing this,” Caralco told Patch in a phone interview.

But not everyone is happy with Mazzei’s decision. Blue Point Civic Association President Ed Silsbie said his group has very supportive of the ‘active’ parkland partnership effort and has been involved for years working toward ‘good outcome’.

Mazzei's resolution move caught the group off guard, he said, and shut out from the new project effort.

“We learned the town passed a walk-on resolution (an off-the-agenda resolution) to pull the purchase out of the county's hands and buy it as open space. We've asked for information and participation in the process, we have been told to stay out,” he told Patch in an email.  “Looking at the project so far we feel that a real park is better than 17 bulldozed acres with a walking path."

He said the park has the potential to be as successful as the Heritage Center park in Mt. Sinai, which is a two-decade joint effort by the county, town and a property trust organization. The site boasts a community center, playing fields, walking path, a play ground, and ornamental gardens.

“We acknowledge today's economics will not build much. Our government found the money to buy it, they can also find a way to hold the land until we can design/build a park,” he wrote, noting he believes most residents don't want a 'passive' park.

“The BPCCA understands that much of our community would like an active park. Buying it as open space cancels any future ability to meet that desire.”

BluePointer October 20, 2012 at 12:53 AM
Hopefully this is my last comment - The here and now is open space preservation, which will be a big plus for the community. The legislative process is what it is and resulted in a positive and beneficial outcome for our town. From all that was written, it kinda sounds like the BPCCA feels slighted. Hopefully, their leadership can move on and apply their energy to address some of the blight in our town, such as the abandoned Bell Ave and Kennedy Ave gas stations. The business strip on Main Street near the BP gas station looks like it's ready to go under, too. Finally, I don't buy all the secret government stuff being written about.
Ed Silsbe October 20, 2012 at 01:57 AM
Deflecting to Main St. really?? We can force businesses to thrive? Good trick. We do far more than you know to help. Truly concerned ask your professionals to help also. Slighted no misled, just like the entire community. Still don't know why, kinda know how. Your legislative process is grossly flawed if this is normal, "The ends justify the means" is a horrible & immoral outlook. So your alternative point on the "Gov't stuff" is that I/we are lying. Very nice you can back that up right? We can back up our observations/research. I have not called you a liar, I have tried only to politely addressed your concerns/assertions about us. Tune in Ch. 18 & watch" walk-on" (Off agenda) resolutions 749 & 750 get unanimously accepted w/o discussion & then unanimously approved w/o discussion. When were they discussed? Lesko even said he'd be out to go camping, yep he knew just what he was voting for. I do know NYS's open meeting law & It's not legal for any Town Bd. to discuss a resolution in Executive Session or any other private setting. That's a meeting, legal only in advertised/public settings. So you say we are lying to say that Mazzei did not promote an Active Park in March only to flip flop on Aug 28th. Yep we missed the big meeting to discuss it all? Oh did you hear about the hearing for the acceptance of the Open Space application? No one did. Why? If it's so great why not promote it?
BayBlue1 October 20, 2012 at 09:36 AM
The Heritage park is a great model of how it can be done correctly. I am concerned that if it gets built that it will not be maintained once the initial buzz wears off.
Ed Silsbe October 20, 2012 at 05:08 PM
Since you said "you don't buy" what I wrote I can only suppose the alternative perspective is that there's a lie in there somewhere. The Town Bd. discusses the heck out of stuff, but 2 unscheduled/undiscussed reso's to borrow 3 1/2 mil. got -0- discussion, so when were they discussed? That discussion by law must be in public, Ex. Ses. or the Dinner it's not legal. Derail what? You can have the park you want w/ the Co./Town deal too. We seek discussion before spending 3 1/2 mil. in borrowed $'s. Tell us all truthfully if Mazzei's March reso' for the Active Park was still in play you'd just sit back & let the wonderful legislative process play out, right? Your target? We have/do plenty to "help" Main St "In your view" more to be done? Come to a meeting & help out!! We meet 1st Tues of the mo. 7:00 in the small conf. rm. @ the Library, a big issue & we'll get you a bigger rm. We always welcome the input. Your target? Businesses on Kennedy & Division were looked @ because of Community concerns, not even members, over some bad activity. We held open meetings @ the Blue Point Bible Church & went out of our way to be fair. We put up over 100 signs in the area to invite the businesses out (They kept taking them down, Residents knew about the mtg' we went to great lengths to get the businesses out.). We got Town officials out to several mtg's answering both sides concerns. Yes all out in the open, professional & the way it should be. It's the way we roll.
Ed Silsbe October 20, 2012 at 06:31 PM
Far be it from me to bully anyone. If you question the civic's & or my integrity I am up to defending what we've been up to. You don't seem to agree w/ much of what we've ever done, you must know things we don't, please clue us all in. You've made dozens of declarations about us/me I've answered them truthfully & politely. I asked you one direct question and you have not answered it, you deflected it w/ an accusation of assault? Really? It's been interesting. I need to get back to work. Civic Pres. pays less than nothing. Want to get involved? Come to a meeting, join, stay informed, have a voice. Unless you have a real issue or an answer to my only question I'm done w/ this string.

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