Derelict Riverside building razed as locals eye other blighted properties


By mid-day Wednesday, the mobile home formerly at 40 Pine St. in Riverside was diminished to a pile of debris where the building once stood.

Locals are hoping to see more derelict buildings torn down in the future after efforts had been made to ensure the former mobile home was razed to the ground.

The home, which has been vacant since November, was condemned by the town in January for numerous code violations. At the time, Southampton Town said the home had no proper foundation or tie-downs, the floors had holes in them and there hadn’t been any substantial repairs or maintenance at the site in years.

Additionally, the only electricity to the building — owned 40 Pine Street Inc., a company headed by Lyle Pike — came from an extension cord run from an adjacent home. The building had no central heat, no septic system and no plumbing, town attorney Richard Harris said in January.Demo1

“I can’t tell you how happy I am,” Vince Taldone,Flanders, Riverside and Northampton Community Association president, said. “We have been reporting this location for a very long time.”

Southampton Town also approved razing the blue home at 433 Riverleigh Avenue in Riverside. Richard Harris, assistant town attorney, said the building is going up for a bid to find a contractor. He expects the demolition to occur sometime in April.

As of now, these are the only two buildings in the town approved to be torn down. Community members are discussing the possibility of razing other locations that don’t meet town code, Mr. Taldone said.

One of these properties is located on the corner of Ludlam Avenue and Phillips Avenue, near the Phillips Avenue Elementary School, said Ron Fisher, chairman of the Flanders, Riverside, Northampton Civic Advisory Committee. He said the building is “caving in and falling in on itself” and added that the recent snow storms have caused more damage to the structure.

“Our CAC has agreed that this is the single largest issue that we want addressed in our hamlet this year — even more than our overcrowded rentals,” he said in an email. “We as a community have identified over a dozen of these structures that decrease the quality of life for us, present hazards in our neighborhoods, encourage illegal activities [and] provide areas for squatters and drug use.”

Mr. Fisher said he hopes to work with code enforcement to either make the buildings safer or have them razed like the mobile home on Pine Street was on Wednesday.

Mr. Pike also owns the former Court House Restaurant on Griffing Avenue in Riverhead, which was approved for demolition by the Town of Riverhead in January as well.

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Photo Captions: An excavator removes what is left of the mobile home at 40 Pine Street in Riverside. Southampton Town decided to demolish the building in January since it didn’t meet code requirements. (Credit: Nicole Smith). Photo, right: A photo of the demolition in progress. (Credit: Richie Naso)