Suffolk officials break ground on Rails to Trails project

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Suffolk officials were in Miller Place Friday to break ground on the Rails to Trails project.

The 10-mile recreation path extends from Port Jefferson to Wading River. Many say the hiking and biking trail is much needed in Suffolk County.

"It's a way to promote our economy," says Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone. "It's a way to promote tourism. This is a huge win for the people of Suffolk County.

MORE: Bellone approves funding for Rails to Trails project

As News 12 has reported, the federal- and county-funded project will create a paved path along an abandoned LIRR track path, which is now owned by PSEG Long Island.

The project has also drawn its fair share of concern. Residents whose backyards butt up against the trail are worried about their privacy.

"We're losing our privacy of our backyards and we're paying a lot of taxes here," says Rocky Point resident Charlie Conti. "I'm paying more than $12,000 a year. I don't want people walking behind my house and then I have to go back there and police it. You know eventually it's going to be riffraff back there and cause problems."

Officials say they are looking into getting funding to help with the privacy concerns.

The trail is set to open in 2021.

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