Calverton, New York

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Calverton is a hamlet (and census-designated place) in Suffolk County, New York, United States. The population was 5,704 at the 2000 census.

The community is on the border of the Town of Riverhead and the Town of Brookhaven.

Contents

History

Calverton's history is tied closely to the Naval Weapons Industrial Reserve Plant.

The Navy purchased 6,000 acres (24 km2) around Calverton from a local farmer named Harry Edwards in 1953 including, the mansion of a grandson of F.W. Woolworth so that Grumman could test and finish jets. A 10,000-foot (3,000 m) runway was built and most of Grumman's F-14 Tomcat and E-2C Hawkeye aircraft were to pass through the plant.

In 1965 Nelson Rockefeller proposed using the base as the fourth major airport for the New York metropolitan area. Grumman and local opposition ended the quest.

In 1978 more than 1,000 acres (4.0 km2) of the base was used to create Calverton National Cemetery which is the largest area and busiest (in terms of burials per day) United States National Cemetery.

In 1995 after Northrop acquired Grumman, the new Northrop Grumman pulled out of the base and Navy began liquidating the land.

In 1996 before the base could be turned over the Town of Riverhead, the base was used to reassemble the wreckage of TWA Flight 800 which had crashed about 20 miles (32 km) south.

In 2000 Skydive Long Island (formerly located at East Moriches) moved to the airport, and to this day continues to generate the majority of the current air traffic as a key destination for New York based skydivers.

Through 2007, debates raged whether to turn the base into a mega complex around a NASCAR track called EPCAL Centre or a giant ski resort based construction of an artificial 350-foot (110 m) high indoor ski mountain.

In January 2008 the Riverhead Town Board with newly elected officers signed a deal to sell the airport for $155 million to Riverhead Resorts to build the ski mountain and tear up the airport runway and replace it with a lake overruling a December vote to give the NASCAR track the go ahead.

It will take up to three years to get the necessary environmental permits and the proposed opening date of the project is 2012.[1]

A portion of the base is also being developed as an industrial/office park.[2]

Calverton was first referred to as "Baiting Hollow Station" when the Long Island Railroad arrived in 1844. The station closed in 1958, but the sheltered shed for the station remained standing as of 2007.[3][4] Its native American Name Conungum or Kanungum, meaning a ``fixed line or ``boundary.

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