Environmental review needed for Riverhead bike path project

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | A sign on Route 25 in Calverton indicates that it is part of a bicycle path, but the town wants to establish a clearly marked bike lane that would extend all the way to Jamesport.

A plan for a bike path running from Calverton to Jamesport might cost about $71,000 more than originally anticipated, Riverhead Town officials learned Thursday.

The town received $3.16 million in federal stimulus money in 2009 for the creation of the path, which could be used for bicycles and pedestrians. It also can be used for sidewalk creation, as well as for widening and resurfacing roadways to allow for bike paths and sidewalks, officials said.

But Vincent Corrado from Westhampton Beach-based Dunn Engineering, the firm designing the project, said the State Department of Transportation would require an environmental analysis to determine what permits are needed to move forward with the plan. That review would cost an estimated $71,150.

“We didn’t anticipate the level of analysis required,” Mr. Dunn said at the Town Board work session Thursday.

Mr. Dunn said that figure could be covered by the grant, though the town would have to investigate that matter.

“The Town of Riverhead is not in a position to throw in another $100,000,” Supervisor Sean Walter said during the work session. “So I need to know that this gets reimbursed.”

The path has been in the design stages for the past two years, but the town must now submit a plan for the path to the state Department of Transportation by the end of this month, officials said.

Town engineer Ken Testa said though the town must submit the plans by the end of October, it still can make changes afterward.

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