Surfside Crossing Developers Respond To Town Housing Director, New Litigation

Jamie Feeley & Josh Posner •

To the editor,

We were bewildered when we read Tucker Holland’s comments in Nantucket Current’s article last Wednesday: Housing Director Clarifies Town’s Opposition to Surfside Crossing. He claimed that we have not been willing to formally agree to language that prioritized year-round resident access to these home ownership opportunities. That simply isn’t accurate.

Without getting into the details of confidential settlement discussions, we absolutely have demonstrated a willingness to commit to restricting, in writing, fifty percent (50%) of the units to year- round residents of Nantucket. We are also willing to consider proposals for how an even greater percentage of the units could be restricted to year-round residents. If we can move the conversation outside the litigation arena, we continue to be committed to pursue further joint efforts towards creating additional restricted units.

We wholeheartedly agree with a segment of Tucker’s quote: “Given the importance of the year-round housing issue, hopefully there will be reconsideration and reasonable minds will prevail.”. However, the Town’s choice to pursue additional litigation makes that sentiment exponentially harder. Litigation comes at an economic cost, both to us and the Town, and the longer such litigation continues the more difficult it will be to come to a mutually beneficial resolution. We implore the Select Board to ask themselves the following questions and reflect on the wisdom of their current approach:

  • Is this the most expeditious approach toward creating much needed affordable and accessible ownership units?
  • Who benefits from the latest appeal?
  • Who will bear the cost of these mounting legal and carry costs? The future homeowners?
  • Will these costs make it more expensive for the Town or other stake holders in any potential
  • deals later?
  • Does this appeal set the table for a collaborative approach toward maximizing year-round units,
  • or does it undermine that opportunity?
  • At this point, aren’t we all better served by working together to make this project its very best, pursuing a carbon net zero construction approach and targeting a maximum number of year- round units?

Outside of a litigious environment, we are currently motivated to collaborate with the Town in an effort toward maximizing year-round restricted units to 75% or even potentially 100%, but those aspirations are not going to survive long with this latest litigation. We hope the Select Board will consider shifting their approach in favor of a good-faith, collaborative effort. We currently have a lot of common ground we can realize together.

Jamie Feeley & Josh Posner

Surfside Crossing Developers

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