Windmill Lane Residents Concerned With Location Of New Southampton Ambulance Headquarters

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At least two neighbors say a planned location on Windmill Lane for a new Southampton Village Volunteer Ambulance headquarters is less than ideal.

Michael Jahnke and Bob Whitman, who live at 215 and 217 Windmill Lane, both claim that the property at 151 Windmill Lane, which is near the village police station and Lola Prentice Park, is inappropriate for an ambulance barn. Both of them mentioned the width of the street, the driveway’s proximity to where delivery trucks park to unload at nearby Stop & Shop, and the neighboring dog park as reasons village officials should reconsider the location.

At a Village Planning Board meeting Monday night—the specific proposal is currently before that board in the public hearing stage, although village residents approved the location as part of a $5.5 million bond in 2014—Mr. Jahnke said that ambulance sirens could frighten dogs and cause them to bark and make noise. He also suggested that the village commission a traffic study to take a closer look at whether Windmill Lane could handle the addition of ambulances regularly speeding down the street.

“They can get onto the street … but there’s no place for the cars to move to let the ambulances pass them,” Mr. Jahnke said. “There’s just not sufficient room there. It’s just not a wide enough street.”

Mr. Whitman added that he would like to preserve the open space where the ambulance building would be constructed. “I would like to maintain as much open land and grasslands as we can,” he said.

Representing the ambulance company at Monday’s meeting was Village Mayor Mark Epley, who pointed out that when village taxpayers approved the construction of the 10,000-square-foot, $5.5 million facility in October 2014, they also approved the location at 151 Windmill Lane.

The mayor added that the proposed property is ideal because it’s in the center of the village and just down the road from the Southampton Fire Department firehouse that has the quickest response time to the estate area and Shinnecock East County Park.

Mr. Epley said, though, that he will discuss with the ambulance company how to further explore the site to mitigate the residents’ concerns.

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