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Why Riverhead’s Wild Wings remains grounded

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Buffalo Wild Wings, the newest national chain restaurant to be built on Riverhead’s Route 58, remains closed a month past its planned grand opening because the owner of the shopping mall has not yet obtained final approvals from the Suffolk County health department.

The property owner has not submitted “as-built” plans for the center, a spokesperson said today.

The county health department  has jurisdiction over septic systems and sewer connections.
“As soon as the as-built drawings are submitted, it’s my understanding that they will be signed-off on. And as soon as they do, Buffalo Wild Wings is fine,” Grace Kelly-McGovern, public relations director for the Suffolk County Department of Health Services said Thursday evening.

Riverhead Town issued the restaurant a temporary certificate of occupancy, Riverhead planning and building administrator Jeff Murphree said today. The state liquor authority issued a liquor license to Buffalo Wild Wings more than a month ago, according to a spokesperson for that agency.

Because the other tenants in the shopping center opened their doors before the health department approval — Dick’s Sporting Goods, Christmas Tree Shop and Five Below — the owner of the strip mall has incurred a $10,000 fine, Kelly-McGovern said.

Discount grocery store ALDI this week announced a Friday, Jan. 10 ribbon-cutting and grand opening.

The 119,000-square-foot Saber Riverhead shopping center, located just east of Riverhead Raceway, is being developed by Saber Riverhead LLC, an affiliate of Saber Real Estate Advisors.

Riverhead attorney Charles Cuddy, who has represented the developer throughout the application process, did not return a phone call seeking comment.

Minneapolic-based Buffalo Wild Wings owns and operates more than 900 locations in the U.S. and Canada. Established in 1982, it went public in 2003.

 

Correction: The original version of this story incorrectly stated, as reported by the health department spokesperson, that the shopping center tenants incurred fines of $10,000 each. 

RiverheadLOCAL photo by Denise Civiletti