Hobby Lobby coming to new shopping center on Route 58

Hobby Lobby, a national arts and crafts retailer that also sells party and home supplies, is coming to Route 58 in Riverhead.

At Thursday’s Riverhead Town Planning Board meeting, board members reviewed an application to amend the previously-approved site plan at the proposed shopping center, where clearing has already begun. Owned by the family of the late Irwin Garsten, who also owned the nearby Apple Honda dealership, the property was approved for a 58,608-square-foot multi-tenant structure. The amended plan is now proposing to house a 55,600-square-foot single tenant structure on just over 12 acres of land between Riverhead Centre and the Riverhead Highway Department property on the north side of Route 58. The Board informally agreed to move the amended site plan along on Thursday.

“We’re hopeful that at the next formal meeting, we might be able to have a site plan resolution,” said the applicant’s attorney, Peter Danowski. “Because we’ve got contractual obligations and we’re really under the gun and we’re in the middle of clearing the site, it would be appreciated if we moved along to the next meeting.”

Town building and planning administrator Jefferson Murphree told the board that the applicant, to no fault of his own, was delayed for reasons outside the scope of the application. He recommended that the board do “anything we can to help the applicant along,” given the circumstances.

Board chair Stan Carey agreed, saying the board has “been through the process” and adding, “it’s a smaller building; it shouldn’t be an issue.”

There are currently three Hobby Lobby locations on Long Island, including one in Commack and another in Bay Shore. The retailer, based in Oklahoma City, has more than 800 stores across the country.

While a number of large chain stores on Route 58 have recently shut down, including Kmart and Toys “R” Us, there are additional projects either proposed or actively under construction. They include Sleep Number, Sonic Drive-In, Raymour & Flanigan, Dollar Tree and Popeye’s Louisiana Kitchen, which is now open for business.

The application is set to be reviewed by the Architectural Review Board on Aug. 21.

Caption: The Hobby Lobby store in Stow, Ohio. (Credit: DangApricot/Wikimedia Commons)

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