Moving house: Literally, with approval for tranist over Mashomack beach

PETER BOODY PHOTO | The old house at the Lightcap property on South Ferry Road, which will be barged to Mashomack Preserve for use as a staff residence.

The Town Board granted the Nature Conservancy a town wetlands permit at its regular meeting on Friday, November 9 that will allow it to move a house across the beach at the Mashomack Preserve.

To be installed on the upland at the preserve to provide housing for staff, the brown-shingled house built in the 1920s — now located on Smith Cove near South Ferry — is being donated to the Conservancy by Jeff and Jane Lightcap, who have replaced it with a much larger, grand shingle-style “cottage.”

The structure will be barged from its site across Smith Cove to the preserve at a time to be determined by the contractor, Davis Construction Building Movers of Westhampton Beach. It will be placed well beyond the wetlands, closer to the manor house than a building that has been torn down and that the moved structure will replace, Preserve Director Mike Laspia has told the Town Board.

During the board’s review of the proposal, Councilman Peter Reich noted the town’s protected wetlands area within 100 feet of the beach will be affected only briefly when the house is moved over it. The only concern for the Town Board, raised by Town Attorney Laury Dowd, was the problem of allowing more than one residential use.