Bus Site Review Rolls Along

The East Hampton Town Board is set to approve the sale of a town-owned property that could become a new school bus facility. The site, a former sewage treatment plant on Springs-Fireplace Road in East Hampton, would be sold to the East Hampton School District. 

An environmental study and a look at the bus facility’s projected effect on traffic have predicted modest impacts, Marguerite Wolffsohn, the town planning director, said on Tuesday. 

Additional traffic delays of about 30 seconds at the North Main Street-Three Mile Harbor Road intersection with Springs-Fireplace Road are anticipated at peak times. V.H.B., the engineering and planning firm that did the study, used June traffic data to make their estimates, she said.

Ms. Wolffsohn said that the intersection was already rated “F” by the school district’s engineering company. 

“That intersection wants fixing whether the school buses go in there or not,” she said.

“The school district is doing all they can to protect the groundwater in their design,” she said. The Planning Department’s view, she said, was that all work on buses be done inside the new building the district plans to erect on the site.

“What we are saying is that the building itself should protect the groundwater,” Ms. Wolffsohn said. There should be no drains in the floor, and the floor should slope to a low point where any spills could be quickly mopped up.

An initial proposal by the school district for a bus facility on a portion of its high school property that fronts on Cedar Street was met with strong opposition from some neighbors last year. The district has been leasing space at 41 Route 114 in East Hampton to house and work on its bus fleet since 2006, when it stopped contracting services from the Schaefer Bus Company.

The next step for the town is to authorize the sale of the property to the school district. The price agreed to with the town was $2.3 million for the almost-3-acre site. East Hampton School District residents will have to vote in favor of the plan for it to go forward, likely in May.

The new building would include maintenance bays, offices, spaces for employees, and room for vocational training for students. 

Ms. Wolffsohn said that the buses would use the existing driveway at the so-called scavenger waste plant.