Downtown developer lands contract to raze buildings on Main Street


The company that was responsible for building parts of downtown Riverhead has now been awarded a contract to demolish part of it.

J. Petrocelli, the Ronkonkoma developer who has been involved in East Main Street projects such as the Long Island Aquarium, Hyatt Hotel, Preston House Restaurant and Hotel and others, won the contract to demolish the vacant buildings at 117 and 121 East Main St The company was one of five bidders for the contract.

The demolition is part of Riverhead’s Town Square project, which will open a view of Main Street near the Suffolk Theater south of the Peconic River.

The two buildings slated for demolition once housed the Swezey Furniture Store and the Twin Fork Bike Store.

The town also acquires a third building, which remains occupied by the Craft’D restaurant and other shops.

City officials say they could potentially demolish this building as well if they find a new location for the tenants. The bicycle shop was still in operation when the city announced its intention to buy and demolish the property.

A rendering of the proposed town square. (Credit: Urban Design Associates)

The city estimated the total cost of acquiring and demolishing the three buildings, which it bought in May, at $ 5.5 million.

Supervisor Yvette Aguiar said the city first came up with the idea for the town square last February.

“It’s very exciting,” said Councilor Tim Hubbard. “In terms of government speed, it’s incredible.

“It’s warp speed,” said the city’s director of community development Dawn Thomas.

J. Petrocelli is now under contract to demolish the two buildings for $ 965,000, according to the resolution that city council unanimously approved last Thursday.

The demolition will likely take place around the week of Oct. 18, but that has not been finalized, according to Ms Thomas.

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