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Bittner Preserve Getting Close to Public Access

Parcel located near Peconic Dunes Camp is getting close to opening to public, says Land Preservation Department.

The Southold Town Land Preservation Department is asking Town Board members for community preservation funds to finish projects such as telephone pole removal and a parking area at Bittner Preserve in Peconic.

The 58-acre parcel, located betweenand Peconic Dunes Park on Long Island Sound, was purchased in 2008 jointly by Southold Town and Suffolk County through federal grants. The park was supposed to open in the spring of 2009, but work still needs to be done to make it safe and accessible to the public, says land management specialist Laura Klahre.

“We haven’t set an absolute deadline as to when the park will be open, but we’re getting there,” she said. “We’re on the same page as Suffolk County, now we’re just crossing T’s and dotting I’s.”

Last week Klahre proposed a plan to the Town Board that included upwards of $30,000 in projects to be covered in Community Preservation Funds then reimbursed through a New York State grant. Those projects include installing a bluestone parking area, removing an existing metal gate and contracting the Long Island Power Authority to disconnect wires from old utility poles in order to return the area to its most natural state for visitors.

“The county loves the plan,” Klahre said. “We’d like to move forward with some of these projects before the overall plan is approved.”

The Town Board approved the draft plan at last week’s regular meeting.

justwondering October 18, 2011 at 06:20 PM
Please tell me they are allowing bridle paths!? The North Fork needs places for horse owners to ride.
Erin Schultz (Editor) October 18, 2011 at 06:38 PM
justwondering: Good question. You might want to call Southold Town Land Preservation at 765-5711.
Rick & Linda Kedenburg October 19, 2011 at 08:33 PM
Yes we have been there for birding census purposes. As leaders of the Southold North sector of the Orient Christmas Bird Count, one of the oldest in the USA, we were always allowed in to count birds by the J. Bittner and then later the Town. There was a nature-birdwalk there a while ago led by North Fork Audubon. The place is a wonder of various North Fork habitats and home to many species of breeding birds and mammal as the Red Fox. It includes Maritime Forest and fresh water ponds as well as high dunes. It's addition to Town Open Space allows for a contiguous reserve for plants and animals from Great Pond to the PLT property west of Goldsmith's Inlet, Including GI County & Town Park and Autumn Pond. Some of the forested area appear to be old growth as there was never any farming done in many areas. It's a treasure for all people on the North Fork to enjoy.
Rick & Linda Kedenburg October 19, 2011 at 08:37 PM
Dear justwondering, When the preserve was owned by Bittner's Hidden Lake Farm there were bridle paths going from the paddocks across Soundview Ave to the Sound. After it's acquisition by the Town and County I don't know what the status is. If the Town Land Pres. people can't help you contact Suffolk County Parks. RICK
Erin Schultz (Editor) October 19, 2011 at 08:43 PM
It is very cool back there — I'd never been down the trail before. Will be nice for others to explore what the area really looked and felt like "back in the day."
SueDit August 17, 2012 at 05:22 AM
As Suffolk county residents who also pay taxes for parks, we are dismayed that we cannot make us of the inlet or trails as we are not allowed anywhere to park. It seems that the town is pruposely keeping it a private beach.

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