After demolition, plans for the Brewster House site in Flanders remain uncertain

Now that the historic Brewster house on Flanders Road has been demolished, Southampton Town officials will next have to decide what to do with the property. 

“For now, I think the plan is just to keep it as a park property,” said Southampton Supervisor Jay Schneiderman in an interview Tuesday. “I will have to go there and take a look. It could need plantings, or the lawn might need to get mowed, I will talk to the Town Board in terms of what the intentions are now.”

He said putting some benches on the property is a possibility. 

The last attempt to develop the property came in 2016, when a group called Restoration Equity, headed by Jamie Minnick of Flanders, proposed to build a hotel, restaurant and pool on the site, which ran into opposition and the property was later sold. 

In June 2021, the town purchased the property for $400,000 with the goal of demolishing the house. Parts of the four-story building were believed to be about 140 years old. It was damaged with a fire in 1987 and never properly repaired, leaving a hole in the roof that allowed rainwater to seep into the building. The town purchased the property using Community Preservation Funds, which come from a voter-approved 2% land transfer tax. It used a portion of those funds that fell under the “water qualify improvement” category. 

Southampton Town has generated more than $60 million per year from the fund. 

Mr. Schneiderman said the town could develop an “innovative alternative” sanitary system to benefit numerous homes that are near the water, rather than having one in each house. But for now, “We have not designed a project for that property other than that we are preserving the land for future, if needed,” Mr. Schneiderman said. “There’s no immediate plans to do any water quality project on this property.”