Groundbreaking marks start of Ronkonkoma Hub project

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RONKONKOMA -

A groundbreaking event Monday marked the start of a massive redevelopment project that aims to change the look and feel of Ronkonkoma.

The $600 million, 53-acre Hub project near Ronkonkoma’s busy train station is slated to bring apartments, shops, restaurants and office space to the area.

Brookhaven town officials say the project will transform and revitalize the area.

Some LIRR riders who spoke with News 12 applauded the project.

But a business owner who owns 3 acres of land on the site is concerned that his property will be taken over by eminent domain. Greg Mensch, of North Fork Express Charter Bus, is among a handful of business owners who are still operating on the site of the Hub.

Mensch says he's not going to leave any time soon.

"We have no intention of doing eminent domain," says Town Supervisor Ed Romaine. "If necessary we will redraw the line to exclude his property -- which is not the best-looking property in this community."

The developer of the project declined to comment on the matter.

The first phase of the project, consisting of six buildings with rental apartments, is being built off of Mill Road. The entire project will take about 10 years to complete.

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