Amagansett Roof Height Kerfuffle: a Tempest in a Teapot

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Warmer weather means it’s time to begin this year’s crop of “Oh, those snotty rich Hamptonites think they’re above the rules!” stories. In this case, it was a nonissue conflated with another story into a confusing and inaccurate account.

To wit: The New York Post reported that local builder Peter Cardel built a house at 84 Meeting House Lane that is higher than the East Hampton’s building code allows. The paper wrote that Cardel is required to remove the roof and gut the top level of the house, and that “the entire neighborhood was up in arms” because the high foundation was causing flooding at neighboring properties.

We reached out to Mr. Cardel, who by the way has a fine reputation and does sterling work according to everyone, and he said, “It’s an attack piece. The Post was fed lies by their source, and if they’d bothered to fact check, would have discovered the story was untrue. Ann Glennon [the Town of East Hampton building inspector] is very upset about the story.”

To set the record straight: the house complies with town building codes. One small gable, in the master bathroom, was over the height limit by two feet, and it’s that part of the roof that Mr. Cardel is replacing. The town urged Mr. Cardel to just apply for a variance for the gable roof, which would be easy to get, but Mr. Cardel wants to do everything exactly correctly. As for the neighborhood flooding, that, according to others, is being caused by another house under construction nearby with a foundation set too low.

The whole thing is a nonissue.