Costco will be allowed to sell gasoline at proposed Route 58 location

07/08/2010 12:00 AM |

Costco will be allowed to sell gasoline from its proposed Route 58 location, but those pumps will have to be at least 500 feet away from the nearest residential property line.
That’s the verdict the Riverhead Town Board arrived at Wednesday, after debating the issue for several months.
Attorneys for the proposed Shops at Riverhead shopping center on the north side of Route 58, across from Riverhead Raceway, have said that Costo, a national membership warehouse chain, would agree to be a tenant in that development but only if it gets permission to sell gasoline, which the property’s current zoning didn’t permit.
Costco has the pumps at other stores nationwide, with the nearest being in Staten Island.
The gas pumps would all be self-serve and could only be operated by credit or debit cards held by Costco members.
The Town Board held a public hearing on a proposal to permit “warehouse clubs or wholesale clubs” in the Destination Retail Zone, where Shops at Riverhead is located, and also to allow fueling facilities as an accessory use to warehouse or wholesale clubs, so long as they are at least 300 feet from residences.
But that ran into opposition from residents of the Foxwood Village residences to the north, and so board members considered increasing the distance the pumps were required to be away from residences to 400 feet.
Peter Danowski, an attorney for Shops at Riverhead, said the pumps were more than 900 feet from Foxwood Village.
But Councilman George Gabrielsen said that in moving the pumps away from Foxwood Village, the developer moved them closer to residences in the Millbrook Community to the east.
Mr. Gabrielsen visited many residents there and found they too had concerns, he said. Because of this, the board postponed voting on the issue last month and brought back the proposal Wednesday with the minimum district required between the pumps and the boundaries of residential property extended to 500 feet.
The measure passed, 4-0, with Councilman John Dunleavey absent.
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