Featured Story

Proposed five-story building on Osborn Avenue nears final site plan approval

The applicant behind an apartment complex at 205 Osborn Avenue will be requesting final site plan approval at the Riverhead Town Board’s next meeting July 6.

The board had previously granted preliminary site plan approval in February for the project, which will feature a five-story building with ground floor offices and 37 apartments on the above-ground floors. Greg Bergman, a planner with the Riverhead Planning Department, outlined during Thursday’s work session some of the hurdles the applicant has undergone to prepare for final site plan approval.

The applicant is also planning to attend next week’s work session for further discussion of the resolution prior to the board voting at the July 6 meeting. The applicant is seeking that approval prior to the July 11 meeting of the Riverhead Industrial Development Agency. The Huntington-based development group, G2D Group, is seeking the IDA’s uniform tax exemption and they hope to receive those final approvals.

“Move as fast as you can,” said Councilman Bob Kern.

The building would be constructed at the corner of Court Street and Osborn Avenue, where the former Long Island Diagnostic Imaging had stood before its recent demolition. The building had long been vacant and a growing eyesore.

The same developer is behind the 331 E. Main St. apartment project, which features 36 luxury units. The project is dubbed, The Shipyard, by the developers.

“There would be some conditions that carry over from preliminary [site plan approval],” Mr. Bergman said. “The board was looking for pre-construction surveys of neighboring properties similar to what we did at 331 just to ensure there’s no damage to neighboring buildings. And a couple other button-up notes.”

Councilman Ken Rothwell asked if any concerns had come up related to vibrations disrupting the neighboring Riverhead Free Library or Suffolk County Historical Society properties. No issues have been reported, the representatives for the applicant said at the work session, and they have vibration monitoring set up.

“It’s a different method of construction than what was happening on Main Street,” said Chris Kent, an attorney for the applicant.

The project is the first that came to the board under the Railroad Avenue Urban Renewal Area Overlay District. The district was adopted in January 2021 and allows for increased development density for specific parcels. The town has since appointed a master developer for the Railroad Avenue transit-oriented development that will be highlighted by a 243-unit, mixed-use apartment complex and parking garage. The 205 Osborn building would have 37 apartments. The majority of those, 24, would be one-bedroom and 10 would be two-bedroom. The remaining three would be studios.

A rendering of the proposed mixed-use building proposed at Osborn Avenue and Court Street. (Credit: G2D Development)

Mr. Bergman said there was several issues related to vegetative buffers that the applicant needed to address to shore up the site plan application. Three existing trees on the western property boundary with the library were originally to remain. However, based on the proposed improvements to curbing, landscaping and lighting, “it proved very difficult for those trees to remain as is,” Mr. Bergman said.

The applicant sought approval to remove those trees and replant with six emerald green arborvitae at a height of eight to 10 feet each, Mr. Bergman said.

He said the applicant received approval from the library director, which was required prior to final site plan approval.

The applicant will also remove an existing vegetative buffer on the northern boundary that is located entirely on the library property. The applicant said it received approvals from the library Thursday to remove those trees and replace them with 17 emerald green arborvitae.

“It’s going to beautify the area,” Supervisor Yvette Aguiar said.