The Superstar Beverage building on Route 112 in Coram has been condemned as a result of illegal activity and safety issues.
Following an investigation, the alcohol distributor, a source of many complaints of drug and alcohol related activities, was cited with numerous State Liquor Authority violations, including sale to minors as well as licensing violations. The Town of Brookhaven building inspector and fire marshals condemned the location for fire code violations and for no Certificate of Compliance and no Certificate of Occupancy.
“You had prostitution here, drug dealing, the sale of alcohol to underage individuals — all of that poses significant public safety risks and degrades our quality of life here,” Suffolk County Police Commissioner Tim Sini said. “We’re not going to stand for that.”
Legislator Sarah Anker (D-Mount Sinai) said that the site has been a nuisance to the community for years.
“I have been continuously working with local community leaders, the Suffolk County Police Department and the Town of Brookhaven to collaborate on public safety and revitalization efforts,” Anker said. “It is important that we do everything in our power to support the Coram community and its local businesses to ensure that it remains economically viable.”
Residents rushed to social media to voice their support for the shutdown.
“This is amazing,” Eric Malmed wrote on Facebook. “This area was being turned into such a dump because of that place, and the shopping center across the street was so unsafe. Thank you.”
Others are afraid it won’t get rid of the problem.
“Do you think closing it down will get rid of drugs and prostitution in the area?” Robert Mindlin of Selden asked. “You are sadly mistaken.”
Tom Hoffman of Yaphank echoed his sentiment.
“Getting rid of the beer store won’t get rid of the problem,” he said. “They will migrate somewhere else within the county. It’s happened before and it will happen again. I cannot take away from the exceptional work of our county’s finest. I just hope relocating the problem does not create a larger one via conglomeration.”
To help cut off the problems though, Anker and Legislator Robert Calarco (D-Patchogue) formed the Coram Plaza Revitalization Task Force in the spring in response to quality of life concerns from Coram residents. The task force is made up of many community stakeholders including elected officials from the state, county and town, the Suffolk County Police Department, the Department of Social Services, local civic leaders, property managers and representatives from not-for-profit organizations. The task force has coordinated revitalization efforts including homeless outreach efforts, increased security at the shopping center and the condemnation of Superstar Beverage.
“I would like to thank Commissioner Sini and the Town of Brookhaven on their collaboration, which they have brought to a higher level than we have seen before,” Calarco said. “They recognize that when we all work together, we can produce real effective change for our communities.”
He said local business owners in the Coram Plaza shopping center have said they’ve seen a marked improvement in security and the ability of their costumers to feel comfortable shopping in their stores, especially since the beverage center shut down.
Sini said he intends to keep it that way.
“Town, police and county officials are going to stand with the community, work together, and solve our public safety problems,” he said.