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Riverhead gets grant for downtown lighting projects

Using a mix of Community Development Block Grant and Suffolk County Downtown Revitalization funding, lighting improvements are planned for downtown Riverhead.

The project will replace 30 parking lot lamps and eight decorative lamps, town engineers said. It’s expected to cost around $10,000.

“The goal is to take all the lights we have and convert them to LED,” said Supervisor Laura Jens-Smith.

Five decorative poles are slated for Peconic Avenue and three will border Sunny’s Grill, according to deputy town engineer Ernesto Rosini. “It should be definitely brighter,” he said.

“The old fixtures, they were broken. They didn’t match,” said Community Development Administrator Dawn Thomas, who helped secure grant funding for the project.

Town officials also discussed how alleyways downtown could be better lit to improve walkability. Ms. Jens-Smith suggested Thursday that grant funding be sought to improve lighting in some of Main Street’s 10 alleys. 

“We’ve been successful getting lighting done through our grants,” she said. “Maybe now we can focus on some of the alleyways on how to change them over not only to make them brighter but also make them more inviting to walk through.”

Ms. Thomas said that some lighting along the riverfront is also in need of repair, and could be considered for a future project.

The next round of applications for downtown revitalization funding is due in early 2019, she said. 

“If there’s a desire to work on a comprehensive alleyway plan, now would be the time to work on that,” she said.

Councilwoman Jodi Giglio said the town should strategize based on new wayfaring signs that will be going up on Main Street. “Those should be the alleys we work on as far as lighting,” she said.

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