Ribbon cut on trail connecting Riverside to Peconic

“We’re called Riverside, but we have no access to the river,” Angela Huneault, president of the Flanders, Riverside and Northampton Community Association, said last week at a ribbon-cutting ceremony for a long-awaited trail to link the hamlet directly to the Peconic River.

“That’s the number one thing we keep hearing over and over again,” she said, noting that river access was the top public response to a Riverside Revitalization Action Plan survey the civic group and Southampton town conducted in 2017. 

Last Wednesday, Ms. Huneault and Southampton Town Supervisor Maria Moore were present for the formal opening of a 1.6-mile trail that will eventually lead to the Peconic River. The trail crosses Suffolk County-owned land, but the project is being undertaken by Southampton Town, officials said.

The county parcel is meant mostly for passive recreation, but the town also purchased an adjacent property where more uses will hopefully be permitted, Ms. Moore said. In addition to the trail, she said the town plans to install a kayak launch area as well as a fishing pier, using $550,000 in grant funding the town has received.

The trail currently stretches from Route 25 on the south toward the river, and a there is a small parking lot at the north end of the property. However, officials said extensive clearing will still be needed to open the north end of the trail itself, which fronts the river. That work is expected to be finished by the end of the year.