Pictured Above: The corner of the Main Road and New Suffolk Avenue, where residents fear a large hardware store could dramatically alter the neighborhood.

The Southold Town Board is considering a six-month moratorium on construction along the Main Road in the vicinity of Love Lane in Mattituck, and is seeking public input on the moratorium at its Feb. 26 meeting.

The town plans to use the six-month time frame to consider the results of a recent traffic study, a planning board study of parking in the area, and the town’s Comprehensive Plan update, which is expected to be completed in the upcoming months, according to the text of the proposal.

The moratorium would directly impact a controversial proposal for a 20,000-square-foot hardware and paint store complex on a 1.7-acre property at the corner of the Main Road and New Suffolk Avenue, but it would exclude projects that have already received all permits, residential applications and applications by municipal corporations, special taxing districts and fire districts.

The moratorium would affect properties along the Main Road (State Route 25) from Bay Avenue to Pike Street.

A public hearing on the proposal will be held next Tuesday, Feb. 26 at 4:30 p.m. at Town Hall. The full text of the bill is online here.

 The proposed local law says “there is insufficient infrastructure to handle the drastic increase in traffic in recent years and to allow for the safe passage of pedestrians to safely cross Main Road at the Love Lane intersection as well as at other intersections immediately to the East and West of the aforementioned intersection. This lack of infrastructure puts the health, safety and welfare of the public at risk.”

“The residents of the hamlet of Mattituck and the surrounding areas have voiced their concerns regarding the risk to the health, safety and welfare of the community and the need for improvements to the infrastructure at the intersection of Main Road and Love Lane.  Similarly, local business owners have identified the traffic issues along Route 25 and Love Lane as has having a negative effect on local businesses,” it adds.

Town representatives are currently meeting with state Department of Transportation officials to discuss improvements at the Main Road/Love Lane intersection recommended by a recent town-commissioned traffic study, but, according to the proposed text “there are five more intersections in the area where Main Road intersects with a local road where there is no signal and/or no crosswalk to safeguard pedestrians. Therefore, after reviewing initial drafts of the traffic study, the Board is of the opinion that the traffic study needs to be expanded to address these additional intersections along Main Road.”

If approved, the local law would take effect immediately upon filing with the New York Secretary of State.

Beth Young
Beth Young is an award-winning local journalist who has been covering the East End since the 1990s. She began her career at the Sag Harbor Express and, after receiving her Masters from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, has reported for the Southampton Press, the East Hampton Press and the Times/Review Media Group. She founded the East End Beacon website in 2013, and a print edition in 2017. Beth was born and raised on the North Fork. In her spare time, she tinkers with bicycles, tries not to drown in the Peconic Bay and hopes to grow the perfect tomato. You can send her a message at editor@eastendbeacon.com

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