11/24/15 11:17pm
11/24/2015 11:17 PM


Residents of the Flanders-Riverside area had planned for days to speak before the Southampton Town Board about the need for greater policing on their streets in the face of a recent crime wave.


04/23/15 12:00pm
04/23/2015 12:00 PM
Renaissance Downtowns' plans to help revitalize Riverside are expected to be presented to the Southampton Town Board next Thursday. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch, file)

Renaissance Downtowns’ plans to help revitalize Riverside are expected to be presented to the Southampton Town Board next Thursday. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch, file)

A year after Renaissance Downtowns signed on with Southampton Town to create a new zoning code aimed at revitalizing Riverside, the time is coming for the company to unveil its redevelopment plans.

The plans — expected to be unveiled next week — hinge on the economically distressed hamlet’s getting a new sewage treatment plant and landowners’ getting incentives to build up their lots in exchange for accepting tightened environmental restrictions.  (more…)

08/02/14 2:00pm
08/02/2014 2:00 PM
The existing farm stand and small house on the property will be knocked down. (Credit: Tim Gannon)

The existing farm stand and small house on the property will be knocked down. (Credit: Tim Gannon)

A 6,000-square-foot building featuring a Subway sandwich shop, a pizzeria and two retail stores has been proposed for the southeast corner of Flanders Road and Glider Avenue in Flanders.

Property owner Roussi Mitev is proposing to demolish the existing residence on the property, along with other buildings on the site and build the new commercial building in their place.

Shopping center rendering.

Shopping center rendering.

The property is  0.69 acres in size and is just slightly west of a new 7-Eleven store being constructed at the southwest corner of Flanders Road and Cypress Avenue.

The Southampton Town Planning Board held what’s known as a pre-submission conference on the plan last Thursday, July 24. That’s a public hearing held on the early stages of a project, and an additional hearing will be required in the future when the site plan is more detailed, according to Southampton Planning Board chairman Dennis Finnerty.

People also can submit comments in writing to the Planning Board within the next 30 days, he added.

“The Subway is going to be like every Subway,” Mr. Mitev told the Planning Board. “We have to follow their [franchise] rules.” (more…)

06/11/14 4:30pm
06/11/2014 4:30 PM

The new Flanders 7-Eleven takes shape at Flanders Road and Cypress Avenue. (Credit: Tim Gannon)

It may be a little late, but Flanders residents are voicing opposition to a 7-Eleven already under construction on the southwest corner of Flanders Road and Cypress Avenue.

“Nobody wants it,” said Barbara Swisloski. “They all think someone will get run over there.”  (more…)

04/19/14 8:00am
04/19/2014 8:00 AM
Riverside foot bridge to Riverhead

GRAPHIC COURTESY JAY SCHNEIDERMAN | A possible footbridge that will cross the Peconic River and connect Riverside to downtown Riverhead.

As part of the recent efforts to revitalize the Riverside area, Southampton Town sent out a request for proposals last week for engineering and planning companies to design a proposed pedestrian bridge over the Peconic River. (more…)

04/18/14 10:30am
04/18/2014 10:30 AM
Route 24 in Riverside. Southampton Supervisor Anna Throne-Holst signed an agreement Tuesday with Plainview-based Renaissance Downtowns to lead planning and development efforts. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

Route 24 in Riverside. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch, file)

Southampton Town has signed a contract with a “master developer” as part of a multi-pronged approach of revitalizing the long-beleaguered Riverside area that’s just a short walk away from downtown Riverhead, which has made its own strides as of late.

The development firm, Renaissance Downtowns of Plainview, has also leased office space on Peconic Avenue and is advertising for local employees to man the office. (more…)

01/02/14 9:00am
01/02/2014 9:00 AM

BARBARAELLEN KOCH FILE PHOTO | Flanders Riverside & Northampton Community Association president Vince Taldone with his dog Champ in Riverhead in 2012.

Back in 2011, the Flanders, Riverside and Northampton Community Association needed a new leader, as its president then was planning to run for Southampton Town Board.

The only person willing to take the job at the time was Vince Taldone, a Riverhead Town resident who owned property in Flanders but didn’t live there; thus, he could not serve as the group’s president. The organization then voted to change its own bylaws so Mr. Taldone could take the helm at FRNCA.

Two years later, Mr. Taldone, who was FRNCA’s vice president in 2012, is the group’s president once again, and is heavily involved in efforts to revitalize the hamlet of Riverside, which for many years has been plagued by crime and blight, high tax rates and a lack of commercial activity.

A master developer has now been hired by Southampton Town with the goal of bringing commercial development to the area. A commercial sewer district study has been completed by Suffolk County and county and town officials hope to run sewers through the area, allowing the type of development that had not been possible previously due to the area’s high water table.

Then there’s the grant money. Just last month it was announced that town received a state grant to plan the construction of a footbridge over the Peconic River from Riverside into Riverhead. This came on the heels of a county grant being used to create a walking trail through county parkland leading to the river.

Behind all of this is Mr. Taldone, who, unlike many of the elected officials who have worked in this recent push to help Riverside, is doing his part solely as a volunteer.

For this reason and more, Mr. Taldone is the News-Review’s Civic Person of the Year for 2013.

“Vince has done a lot of the legwork” on the pedestrian bridge proposal, said South Fork county Legislator Jay Schneiderman (I-Montauk), who has worked with Mr. Taldone on many of the ongoing plans for Riverside. “He deserves a lot of credit. He’s not getting paid for any of it, and he’s doing a lot of work.”

Mr. Taldone is retired from a career in New York City government, where he served primarily in program and land use planning positions within the Department of Citywide Administrative Services.

And his volunteer work isn’t limited to Riverside.

Since retiring, he’s volunteered on Riverhead Town’s Landmark Preservation Commission, the town’s handicapped advisory board and the board of directors of Riverhead Townscape, a nonprofit that works on local beautification projects.

Mr. Taldone also is a longtime volunteer for 5 Town Rural Transit, which seeks to improve public transportation on the East End, has volunteered at the Riverhead Town Animal Shelter and he is a former member of the Suffolk County Planning Commission.

And somehow he does all this with a vision impairment that prevents him from driving a car.

Richard Naso, chairman of Southampton Town’s Citizen Advisory Committee for Flanders, Riverside and Northampton, was the person who suggested Mr. Taldone become FRNCA’s president in 2011. Earlier this year, Mr. Naso also suggested informally to a News-Review reporter that Mr. Taldone be nominated for a Person of the Year award.

“Because of his experience as a planner in New York City, he has the ability to get things moving,” Mr. Naso said. “Most of us don’t have that experience or expertise.”

He said Mr. Taldone has experience in applying for grant money and also was able to negotiate with both Southampton and Riverhead town officials on the footbridge proposal, which needs approval from both municipalities.

“He was able to get so much going in such a short period of time,” Mr. Naso said.

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