Residents on City Island are concerned about the possible sale of a yacht club that has been an institution for decades.
The Stuyvesant Yacht Club may soon be leased, and perhaps ultimately sold, to the Parks Department, according to multiple sources.
The club has been at its current location at the eastern end of Centre Street for 90 years.
The Stuyvesant now has only about eight members and is currently in discussions with Parks, said John Doyle, the organization’s corresponding secretary.
Doyle added that CICA has reached out to Parks, ultimately filing a Freedom of Information Law request for documents and correspondence.
“At the end of the day, (the Stuyvesant) is an institution that has to meet its financial obligations,”said Doyle, who added “The Parks Department is an agency we expect more transparency out of.”
According to a recent letter to Commissioner Mitchell Silver, the CICA said that Parks should engage the community in the planning process if they take an interest in the boat club.
Among the concerns they would like Parks to address, according to the letter, are:
• The need for onsite parking
• Concerns that a full-time concessionaire might compete with local businesses and bring much traffic onto Centre Street or nearby blocks.
• Concerns about recreational nightlife, similar to that of Parks’s Dyckman Marina in Manhattan
Parks could enter into a short-term lease, but if it were to purchase the club and turn it into one of their facilities, it would eventually trigger a Uniform Land Use Review Process, said Barbara Dolesnek, CICA vice president.
Greg Clancy, a Centre Street resident, said that he is concerned that a use other than a club for about 100 boaters might change the nature of his block.
While he is neutral about Parks operating a marina at the site, he is not yet confident that the agency will do so with appropriate controls that will not change its use.
A Parks Department spokesman stated that Stuyvesant members invited Parks to discuss the possibility of the agency acquiring the property and operating it as a public marina.
“Though no plan of action is set, we made clear that we were being responsive to the club’s interest in staying viable, and we do believe that the marina could serve very well as a public amenity,” the Parks spokesman stated.
Parks has received a FOIL request and is preparing documents for the CICA, stated Parks.
The CICA was also present at two meetings that were held on the issue, according to multiple sources.
Simone Lageoles, SYC vice president, stated in an email that the Parks Department is indeed interested.
“The club property would continue with the same use it has enjoyed at this location for the past 90 years,” she stated, adding “We would continue to be good, respectful neighbors for hopefully the next ninety years.”