Applicants hoping to apply for the new Summerwind Square affordable apartments in downtown Riverhead have a little more time.
Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone announced on Monday that the deadline to apply for the affordable rentals has been extended to May 1.
The Summerwind Square project includes 52 new affordable rentals.
“These apartments offer renters a vibrant lifestyle in a riverfront walkable community at an affordable cost,” Bellone said. “Providing additional housing options for our local workforce is critical to continue the revitalization of this up and coming downtown.”
Summerwind, the four-story residential/commercial building under construction on Peconic Avenue, will house a Bridgehampton National Bank financial services center, restaurants and several stories of affordable housing.
The apartments offered are efficiency, one-bedroom and two-bedroom rental units. Under the covenants of the development, the apartments will remain affordable in perpetuity, Bellone said.
The units will be affordable to households earning up to 120 percent of the area median income, with half of the units being affordable to households earning up to 80 percent of the area median income. Rents based on 2010 projects are expected to be:
Up to 80 percent AMI: Efficiency Unit/Rent: $905 and One-Bedroom/Rent: $1042.
Up to 100 percent AMI: Efficiency Unit/$1137 and one-bedroom/$1310.
Up to 120 percent AMI: Two-Bedroom/$1559.
Bellone said the Long Island Housing Partnership will screen applicants and conduct a lottery. The application and comprehensive details of the eligibility criteria, income guidelines, and other elements of the program are available by calling the Long Island Housing Partnership at 631-435-4710. The application can also be downloaded from the Suffolk County website.
“In Suffolk, housing is an ongoing challenge, one we are committed to conquering," Bellone said. "Summerwind is designed to provide the kind of housing that allows people to work, live, shop and find entertainment within walking distance of their homes. Summerwind is a defining moment for Riverhead and will contribute to its re-emergence as one of Suffolk’s finest historic downtowns. People are going to love living there."
Town Supervisor Sean Walter said the Summerwind project, along with similar concepts in Patchogue, meet a growing need for young people just starting out.
"I think Summerwind will be wildly successful," he said. "Kids don't want to live in basement apartments. There's a demand for it. We owe it to the community and to Long Island as a whole to be looking at this."
The project, which has been in the works for over four years, broke ground in 2011.
The private $4 million project, had its start date pushed back due to the poor economy, Riverhead Town Councilwoman Jodi Giglio has said. The project is sited on the property next to the Vail-Leavitt Music Hall, formerly the site of Club 91.
In 2011, Giglio said the project was a win-win, bringing about 100 construction workers to the site every day for the year-long construction period at the site.
Two hundred and ninety-four people from Riverhead alone had already asked to fill the 52 apartments of workforce housing at Summerwind in 2011, Giglio said.
Giglio, whose three oldest children have moved away from Long Island due to high taxes and rent, said in a past interview that the project is an important way to revitalize downtown while keeping young adults from leaving Riverhead.
"We hope to keep our youth here so we can continue to get volunteers for our fire departments and our ambulance corps, have kids stay close to home, near Mom and Dad," she said.