Image: Google Maps

Work on the Riverside traffic circle is shutting down for the winter.

The cold temperatures make it “prohibitive” to lay asphalt and concrete and “difficult to effectively work on the project,” the county announced yesterday.

Work will resume in spring, as soon as temperatures permit.

“We have completed work on Nugent Drive, including the drainage system, curb and sidewalk and base asphalt,” the announcement said. “Top course asphalt will be placed near completion of the project. Project perimeter curbing and sidewalk hace been completed except for the location of the two active gas stations. We will complete these sections in the spring.”

The roadway has been cleaned up and made “safe for this period of inactivity,” according to the announcement. The contractor will monitor the project during the downtime.

The traffic circle reconstruction, which carries a $5.25 million price tag, “will convert the existing five-legged, one-lane traffic circle into a modern two-lane roundabout to ease congestion and improve commuter safety,” Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said in May at the project groundbreaking. “It will also allow the county public works department to design and install a new storm sewer system to mitigate flooding issues and treat storm water before it is discharged into the Peconic River.”

The existing traffic circle was designed in 1937.

A reconstructed roundabout is seen by officials and community advocates as a lynchpin the the redevelopment of the distressed hamlet of Riverside.

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Denise is a veteran local reporter, editor, attorney and former Riverhead Town councilwoman. Her work has been recognized with numerous awards, including investigative reporting and writer of the year awards from the N.Y. Press Association. She is a founder, owner and co-publisher of this website.Email Denise.