The East Hampton Village Zoning Board of Appeals announced Friday that it will allow Mollie Zweig to build a rock revetment to protect her oceanfront house on West End Road.
Ms. Zweig’s request was the subject of a lengthy and sometimes controversial hearing, with her representatives arguing for the need and effectiveness of the proposed project and the town trustees, who own and manage the town’s common lands on behalf of the public, imploring the board to consider alternatives given a revetment’s potential detrimental impact on the adjacent shoreline.
A stone groin already in front of the property, which runs perpendicular to the shoreline, is to be removed before the sand-covered rock revetment, which will follow Ms. Zweig’s property line, is installed. The groin was originally constructed by the Army Corps of Engineers “as part of a larger project that anticipated the construction of a string of groins joined by a continuous revetment along a much wider area,” the board’s attorney, Linda Riley, wrote in the determination. The connection was not constructed, so the groin did not function as intended, she wrote, and became partially exposed by Hurricane Irene in 2011 and Hurricane Sandy last year, resulting in an increasing gouging away of the dune and beach around it.
“I would urge all the interested parties — and there are many — to read the full determination, which was very carefully reasoned and explained by our attorney,” Frank Newbold, the board’s chairman, said before reading a summary of it aloud. The board granted the required variances for the rock revetment on the condition that a pole-mounted surveillance camera be removed from Ms. Zweig’s property and a sand-replenishment maintenance program required under the project’s State Department of Environmental Conservation permit be implemented. Ms. Zweig had already agreed to remove the camera and pole. The D.E.C. permit had already been issued.
The board, Ms. Riley wrote, found no reasonable alternative site for the revetment. Numerous seawalls already exist along the shoreline where the proposed revetment will be constructed, and where it is to be built will be farther landward than the existing seawalls.
The board ruled that proposed restoration of the dune — “the ultimate goal of this project,” according to Ms. Riley — “will not have an adverse effect or impact on the physical or environmental conditions in the neighborhood.” The project will include the depositing of 4,000 cubic yards of sand as part of a dune restoration seaward of the revetment.