New stores and restaurants are returning to downtown Riverhead, but there are more than a handful of empty or boarded-up storefronts in the community, a sign of the hard times Riverhead, and the country, has faced.
Riverhead Patch is going to spotlight some of these vacant businesses to start a discussion in the community about what can, could or should be done to make use of the abandoned places across town and revitalize Riverhead.
Just across the street from the Riverhead Free Library and the Suffolk County Historical Society sits a vacant auto shop waiting to be purchased.
The building was once home to , a service and repair shop founded by Kevin Zebroski in 1990. According to the company's website, Zebroski learned auto repair from his grandfather and father, and restarted the family business (called "Tire Craft" at the time) when they retired.
Zebroski writes that after a year of having to "change tires outside in all weather ... rain, snow ... it didn't matter," Tire Country moved to a larger building on Route 58. In 1997 merged with Goodyear dealer Van Dycke & Yousik Goodyear and at 1165 East Main Street.
Today, the old Tire Country auto shop sits empty. Behind the vacant building is a small office where Titlebusters, a real estate service company, is now based.
The building occupies a prime area just outside downtown Riverhead near the Peconic River. What would you like to move into the old repair garage?