The Riverhead Industrial Development Agency unanimously approved a measure Monday allowing Robert James Salon to move into a new, smaller, location in the former Woolworth building on the north side of downtown Main Street.
Robert James Salon has been located on the south side of downtown Main Street for about 10 years, but owner Ray Pickersgill said that store, at about 6,500 square feet, is too big.
The new store is only about 1,300 square feet, he said.
“We are cutting down our operations,” Mr. Pickersgill told the IDA on Monday. “We’re going to make it a little smaller.”
Mr. Pickersgill said they won’t be doing massages or facials anymore, and will just concentrate on haircuts and hair coloring.
IDA approval was a requirement because Woolworth building owner Michael Butler received IDA tax incentives when he renovated the building. The IDA must approve any tenants that move in, according to IDA attorney Richard Ehlers.
Mr. Pickersgill said he plans to increase the number of employees he has from 12 to 14, despite moving into a smaller space.
He said that at one time, the site on the south side of Main Street had 43 employees.
“The recession knocked the wind out of our sails,” said Mr. Pickersgill, who is also the president of the downtown Business Improvement District Management Association.
The Woolworth building also includes Maximus gym on the ground level, 19 apartments on the upper floor, and several retail stores fronting Main Street, including Goldberg’s Bagels and Riverhead Flower Shop.
Mr. Butler said there will still be 850 square feet of retail space still available.
Both Mr. Butler and Mr. Pickersgill said they hoepd the salon can open in the new location as soon as possible.
“He wants to be opened and I want him to pay me,” Mr. Butler said.
Photo Caption: Robert James Salon will move soon into the Woolworth building next to the Riverhead Flower Shop and Goldberg’s Bagels. (Credit: Tim Gannon)