After years of planning, National Grid began work last week installing a natural gas main down the North Road, County Road 48, from Alvah’s Lane in Cutchogue to Ackerly Pond Road in Southold, due to rising demand for natural gas service in Southold Town as the cost of gas has remained low while other fuel prices have skyrocketed.
National Grid spokeswoman Wendy Ladd said Monday that crews began work laying the 27,500-foot long, 12-inch diameter steel pipe along the side of the road last week, and next week will begin digging trenches. The work is expected to continue until the end of November.
“This is really to reinforce the infrastructure to Southold,” said Ms. Ladd, who said property owners along Route 25 already have access to gas. The new pipeline will run down Ackerly Pond Road to National Grid’s Southold compression station on Route 25, about 500 feet west of Ackerly Pond Road, and will be the most extensive National Grid infrastructure project on the East End this year.
She said the work will be done on the shoulder and National Grid is not anticipating having to close the North Road, though the right eastbound lane is closed on the side of the run closer to Alvah’s Lane this week.
Southold Town Supervisor Scott Russell has been pushing the utility company to expand its infrastructure in Southold, as businesses and residents there have clamored for ways to reduce their utility bills. Greenhouses, in particular, have difficulty competing in a market where some greenhouse operators have access to natural gas and some do not.
Ms. Ladd said National Grid will likely begin signing up new gas customers along the North Road route in December.
“We will have people working out on the route. They’d be happy to talk to customers and give them any information they need,” she said. Potential customers can also call 877-MYN-GRID to sign up.
National Grid isn’t the only agency out at work on the North Road this summer. Crews have been repairing a heaved cement section of the road just north of Greenport and installing drywells for several weeks now.