This once-in-a-lifetime listing has already gone viral.
NPR reported this weekend on the impending auction of Plum Island, an idyllic and Hamptons-adjacent property featuring about four miles of sandy beaches and its own 19th century lighthouse.
There is, of course, a catch. Or rather, a catchable contagion.
Since 1955, Plum Island has been home to a research facility studying foot-and-mouth disease.
The disease, while devastating to hoofed animals, is harmless to humans. An abundance of caution, and an eye towards the multibillion-dollar cattle industry, led the U.S. government to quarantine foot-and-mouth to Plum Island more that half a century ago.
Advancements in technology have made this type of natural defense outdated and the research program will be heading to a mainland facility, at which point Plum Island will receive an auction date.
“Devastating disease” may seem like a high barrier to entry for a potential investor, but Jonathan Miller, president and CEO of the appraisal firm Miller Samuel and a New York real estate expert, told NPR that the island’s history may not be a factor in the purchase.
Given its location, Miller believes Plum Island could be worth a billion dollars.
A small price to pay for the Hamptons’ newest neighborhood.