After much fanfare and high hopes, Port Jefferson Village
will not be home to the Long
Island Music Hall of Fame.
Brookhaven town officials will discuss an offer to purchase the bank building that was to house hall at an Oct. 24 meeting. According to Annette Eaderesto, attorney for the town, work for the building was too costly for the Long Island Music Hall of Fame. The town, which owns the property, has already spent money on mold remediation and a roof leak that was fixed.
The announcement comes less two years after Long Island Music Hall of Fame and Brookhaven Town entered into a 15-year lease agreement on the building, with a five-year extension option.
“Basically the building needed an enormous amount of money to fix up for the hall of fame. The prolonged recession made it difficult for the town or for the music hall to go forward,” she Eaderesto.
Brookhaven Supervisor Ed Romaine said in March, "For us, it is a non-performing asset we don't need. And the attitude is we need revenue. Yes, it's one shot, but it's a one-shot we need right now. We have all these expenses and costs because of Sandy, and our reimbursement for that is not going to be 100 percent."
Romaine estimated in March the building could yield the town anywhere from $1 million to $1.5 million.
Margot Garant, mayor of Port Jefferson Village said the building has been vacant for 10 years and needs to be filled.
“LMHOF decided to pull the plug. This is a cornestone landmark location that needs to be occupied,” said Garant.
The mayor said the village had hopes that plans for the hall would come to fruition and help make them a year round destination for visitors.
“We really felt that if we built it, they would come. It would have been a great use for the property. It would get us through the winter when people aren’t coming down,” she said.
Garant said the village has been working with the town to find a vibrant use.
“We don’t really need another bar of restaurant here,” she said.
According to Eaderesto, the proposal is for a retail area in the downstairs of the building and apartments above, which Eaderesto said “fits nicely with that area.”