County approves $2M for Summerwind apartments

Summerwind Square will be built here, on Peconic Avenue downtown.

The Suffolk County Legislature on Tuesday approved almost $2 million in funding needed to make the Summerwind Square apartment tower proposed for downtown Riverhead affordable for renters.
Once built, Summerwind Square will be a four-story mixed use building on Peconic Avenue, just north of the Peconic River. The project calls for a 100-seat restaurant and 5,700 square feet of retail space on the first floor and 52 apartment units on the top three floors. All of the apartments will accommodate what’s known as workforce housing, which means the occupants cannot have an income greater than 80 percent of the median income for the area.
Builder Ray Dickhoff has said he expects to rent the 20 one-bedroom apartments in the complex for about $1,100 per month, the 29 so-called efficiency apartments for about $900 per and the three two-bedroom apartments for about $1,500 per month.
The county Legislature’s approval of $1.976 million was needed to make the project affordable, although that subsidy is awarded to the entire project, rather than the tenants. The developer is then required to keep the apartments affordable for 30 years under the agreement with the county, officials said.
The county also agreed to pay $313,000 in infrastructure improvements near Summerwind Square.
Martin Sendlewski, another principal in the project, said the next step for Summerwind is to close on the acquisition of the former Club 91 property, and then begin demolishing that building before beginning construction, which he says should take  between 10 and 12 months.
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