Thursday, July 22, 2010

40 Sanford Place & Design Guidelines

There is a little brochure available for free in the Building Department called “Southampton Village Historic District Guide for Homeowners” which village officials themselves have admitted to being something “they don’t use anymore.” Nonetheless, these types of guidelines are desperately needed, and they are needed for the entire Village, not just the historic districts.

While I was scouring through codes across the country to provide to the Village during my recent meeting re: demolition penalties, I came across an INCREDIBLE example of design guidelines for the Village of Rosalyn Harbor ( They also have numerous other guidelines and helpful publications available on their website! How refreshing!

Anyway, Roslyn Harbor’s “Guidelines for Additions & New Construction” are great because they verbally and visually describe features that are and are not appropriate. I especially love its diagrams depicting additions that would or would not be suitable, like on page 3 shown below.
The photos at the top are of 40 Sanford Place. The new house in the middle was approved by the ARB last summer, and the photos on the left and right show houses that exemplify the architecture and character of the rest of the street. Do I like the design of 40 Sandford Place? No, but that’s not my point. My point is that this new house is not in keeping with the rest of the street due to its volume and massing. It may comply with all zoning codes, but it is not harmonious with the rest of the street. There are loads of other similar examples being approve throughout the village; take Pulaski Street for instance.

Guidelines like Roslyn’s would be very useful in our community, acting as a tool for the ARB and helping to keep new construction both harmonious and appropriate. Let’s recommend this to our Trustees.

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