Building supply company torn between two sites

Allied Building Products is caught in an industrial park tug-of-war.

The New Jersey-based company has filed an application seeking Riverhead Industrial Development Agency tax abatements to lease space in a 16,500-square-foot building proposed for Edwards Avenue in Calverton.

That building, which has yet to be built, is located in an industrial subdivision owned by 1998 Peconic LLC, a group headed by Paul Elliot of Miller Place and Jim Miller of Southold, who also built the gas station adjacent to the Riverhead Charter School and the industrial land. Mr. Miller also owns Miller Environmental, just south of the industrial subdivision.

David Doran, Allied’s regional manager for New York, told the Riverhead IDA last Monday that his company is also considering the Hampton Business District at Gabreski Airport in Westhampton as a possible location.

Mr. Doran said company officials plan to expand to the East End but haven’t decided between the Calverton and Westhampton sites.

“Right now, we just want to see what our options are,” he told the Riverhead IDA last Monday.

Mr. Doran said Allied needs 30,000 square feet and has an option to build a second phase at the Calverton site, whereas the Westhampton site offers 30,000 square feet in one building.

Allied is eligible for a property tax abatement on whatever improvements its makes to the Calverton property . Those abatements start at 50 percent for the first year and decrease by 5 percent annually over 10 years.

Mr. Doran said Allied has been offered tax abatements at the Westhampton site as well, although he did not indicate who was offering them.

He said they are farther along with the Calverton site. In Westhampton, they deal with an agent, whereas in Calverton, the deal directly with the property owner, he said.

Allied, a family-owned building supply company, was started in Jersey City in 1950 and now has more than 180 locations across the country with over 3,100 employees, according to its website.

The company would have six or seven employees at the Calverton site in year one and “ramp it up quickly after that,” Mr. Doran said. The company pays employees a “living wage” of more than $20 per hour, he said.

Richard Ehlers, the attorney for the Riverhead IDA, told Mr. Doran that the IDA cannot close the public hearing and take action on the application until Allied has a signed contract for the Calverton location.

“But we can’t go into a signed lease unless we know our true costs going into the project,” Mr. Doran responded.

The IDA opted to keep the hearing open until next month to let Mr. Doran get more information on what direction Allied plans to go.

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