The site on Mill Road and Route 58 of a proposed new 45,487-sqaure-foot retail center, including a 152-seat-fast food restaurant. Photo: Denise Civiletti

Plans have been filed for retail stores and a 152-seat fast-food restaurant on the corner of Route 58 and Mill Road.

The roughly seven-acre parcel is one of the last undeveloped corner sites along Riverhead’s busy commercial corridor. It is owned by the L.I. Cauliflower Association and was once used for produce and farm machinery auctions.

The L.I. Cauliflower Association is proposing to develop a 45,487-square-foot retail center on the site, planning aide Greg Bergman reported to the Planning Board at last night’s meeting.

Auction day at the old cauliflower block. Image by Louis Dormand on a 1950s-era Dexter Press postcard.

Developer and builder Richard Israel said the LICA hired his company to bring the project to market. Israel said the fast-food tenant has not yet been secured.

The site plan before the board, depicting three retail buildings and a fast-food restaurant, will be revised to show two retail buildings and the restaurant, Bergman said. The overall development will not be reduced in the reconfiguration, he said, so the board could move ahead with commencing review of the application under the State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA).

The proposed action is a Type 1 action under SEQRA, requiring mandatory coordinated review, Bergman told board members. The planning board last night passed a resolution to seek lead agency in the review of the site plan application and circulate the request to involved agencies.

The development will have potential traffic, noise, sewer and water district impacts that will require analysis, Bergman said, noting that the site abuts a manufactured home park on the north. The property to the west is an office park. It is across from the Riverhead Centre shopping plaza and one of its points of ingress/egress would be at the light at the Mill Road entrance to that plaza.

The site is in the Business Center zoning use district, a commercial district that allows retail, restaurant, banks and other commercial uses as of right.

A traffic impact study will be required, he said. The plan shows two entrances/exits from the site on Mill Road, where the site has 1,100 feet of frontage. The plan also shows one entrance and right-turn-only exit on Route 58.

“Traffic around there is going to be unbelievable,” planning board member Joe Baier said. “It’s bad enough now.”

Correction: This article has been amended to remove the statement that a drive-thru window requires a town board special permit. A restaurant drive-thru window is a permitted accessory use in the BC zoning use district.

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Denise Civiletti
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.