A rendering of a planned industrial park proposed in Calverton....

A rendering of a planned industrial park proposed in Calverton. The Riverhead Planning Board is expected to vote next month on the proposal. Credit: HK Ventures

As superintendent of the Riverhead Charter School in Calverton, Ray Ankrum is well-versed in local traffic woes, frequently fielding comments from parents as traffic snarls near the school’s campus on Route 25.

Traffic — and the potential for it to worsen — is a key reason Ankrum and dozens of Calverton residents oppose a large industrial park planned down the main road from the K-8 school.

“Any additional amount of business in that area is going to be a nightmare for folks that are trying to travel between the hours of 7 and 9 a.m. and 4 and 6 p.m.,” Ankrum told members of the town planning board at an Aug. 3 hearing.

Great Neck-based developer HK Ventures is seeking site plan approval to build a 412,659-square-foot complex on 30 vacant acres on Route 25 east of Fresh Pond Avenue. The campus would include eight warehouses, a cafeteria for tenants and 62 loading docks for box trucks and tractor trailers and will be built in two phases.

Manager Scott Johns later said prospective tenants include contractors, plumbers, electricians, pool companies and a DJ.

The developers say there is a dearth of similar facilities for businesses in Riverhead.

In Eastern Suffolk, Brookhaven Town last month approved a $45 million warehouse and distribution center in Yaphank. Last year, Amazon began operations from a 91,000-square-foot warehouse in the Hampton Business District near Gabreski Airport in Westhampton Beach. The warehouse is part of a commercial park developed by Rechler Equity Partners of Plainview.

Residents at the meeting expressed concerns about whether the site would serve as a distribution center for Amazon or other big-box retailers. Johns said the campus “is not designed to facilitate large distribution. We just don’t have the space.”

Johns said they haven’t inked any deals yet with potential tenants.

The project may face delays over a condition set by the planning board that withholds the issuance of a building permit until the state Department of Transportation completes a reconfiguration project at the intersection of Route 25 and Edwards Avenue.

Josh Heller, a DOT spokesperson, said the project is expected to begin in 2024 and conclude in 2025.

HK Ventures challenged the condition in a lawsuit filed against the town in May. “It essentially puts a qualifier on our ability to start this project,” Johns said.

Ankrum’s concerns were echoed by other residents who fear additional trucks could make the intersection of Route 25 and Fresh Pond Avenue more dangerous, lead to noise pollution and not fit with the rural character of the area.

“These pretty renderings, they look good on paper but they don’t work for the public,” said Krystle Weismiller, a resident of the nearby Timber Park neighborhood.

The plans call for a traffic light, sidewalks and a bike lane at the entrance to the industrial park, which the developers believe will help, rather than impede, traffic flow on Route 25.

Industrial development is a key concern in Calverton. Last year, scores of residents called for a moratorium over a disproportionate number of industrial proposals in the hamlet.

Though the town never adopted a moratorium, many signs that read "No Warehouse" can still be seen across town.

A larger proposal by NorthPoint Development of Kansas City, Missouri, which calls for a 641,000-square-foot logistics center on Middle Road, is undergoing an environmental review.

The HK Ventures project has already received two variances from the town’s zoning board of appeals for building height and impervious surface coverage and awaits a decision by the planning board on the site plan. That could come as early as next month.

Planning board chair Joann Waski said the property is located in an industrially zoned area.

As superintendent of the Riverhead Charter School in Calverton, Ray Ankrum is well-versed in local traffic woes, frequently fielding comments from parents as traffic snarls near the school’s campus on Route 25.

Traffic — and the potential for it to worsen — is a key reason Ankrum and dozens of Calverton residents oppose a large industrial park planned down the main road from the K-8 school.

“Any additional amount of business in that area is going to be a nightmare for folks that are trying to travel between the hours of 7 and 9 a.m. and 4 and 6 p.m.,” Ankrum told members of the town planning board at an Aug. 3 hearing.

Great Neck-based developer HK Ventures is seeking site plan approval to build a 412,659-square-foot complex on 30 vacant acres on Route 25 east of Fresh Pond Avenue. The campus would include eight warehouses, a cafeteria for tenants and 62 loading docks for box trucks and tractor trailers and will be built in two phases.

Manager Scott Johns later said prospective tenants include contractors, plumbers, electricians, pool companies and a DJ.

The developers say there is a dearth of similar facilities for businesses in Riverhead.

In Eastern Suffolk, Brookhaven Town last month approved a $45 million warehouse and distribution center in Yaphank. Last year, Amazon began operations from a 91,000-square-foot warehouse in the Hampton Business District near Gabreski Airport in Westhampton Beach. The warehouse is part of a commercial park developed by Rechler Equity Partners of Plainview.

Residents at the meeting expressed concerns about whether the site would serve as a distribution center for Amazon or other big-box retailers. Johns said the campus “is not designed to facilitate large distribution. We just don’t have the space.”

Johns said they haven’t inked any deals yet with potential tenants.

The project may face delays over a condition set by the planning board that withholds the issuance of a building permit until the state Department of Transportation completes a reconfiguration project at the intersection of Route 25 and Edwards Avenue.

Josh Heller, a DOT spokesperson, said the project is expected to begin in 2024 and conclude in 2025.

HK Ventures challenged the condition in a lawsuit filed against the town in May. “It essentially puts a qualifier on our ability to start this project,” Johns said.

Ankrum’s concerns were echoed by other residents who fear additional trucks could make the intersection of Route 25 and Fresh Pond Avenue more dangerous, lead to noise pollution and not fit with the rural character of the area.

“These pretty renderings, they look good on paper but they don’t work for the public,” said Krystle Weismiller, a resident of the nearby Timber Park neighborhood.

The plans call for a traffic light, sidewalks and a bike lane at the entrance to the industrial park, which the developers believe will help, rather than impede, traffic flow on Route 25.

Industrial development is a key concern in Calverton. Last year, scores of residents called for a moratorium over a disproportionate number of industrial proposals in the hamlet.

Though the town never adopted a moratorium, many signs that read "No Warehouse" can still be seen across town.

A larger proposal by NorthPoint Development of Kansas City, Missouri, which calls for a 641,000-square-foot logistics center on Middle Road, is undergoing an environmental review.

The HK Ventures project has already received two variances from the town’s zoning board of appeals for building height and impervious surface coverage and awaits a decision by the planning board on the site plan. That could come as early as next month.

Planning board chair Joann Waski said the property is located in an industrially zoned area.

BOCES hit-and-run … LIRR bathroom survey … Make your own charm bracelet Credit: Newsday

LI school district settles abuse suit ... BOCES hit-and-run ... Nassau transgender ban ... New plaza at Penn

BOCES hit-and-run … LIRR bathroom survey … Make your own charm bracelet Credit: Newsday

LI school district settles abuse suit ... BOCES hit-and-run ... Nassau transgender ban ... New plaza at Penn

SUBSCRIBE

Unlimited Digital AccessOnly 25¢for 5 months

ACT NOWSALE ENDS SOON | CANCEL ANYTIME