100-Seat Restaurant Proposed for 134 Main St.
When Boynton Meadows development at 134 Main Street was first proposed and approved in 2011, the Planning Board expressed their hope that the multi-use development would feature more commercial space than was originally in the plan.
Responding to that desire, Senate Construction President Bob France returned to the Board to go over a pre-submission review that will seek a special permit modification to enable his firm to use the lower level of the 134 Main Street property for a new 100-seat restaurant.
France explained that initially he anticipated the basement would serve as a storage area. "When we worked to underpin the foundation, we dug down and reinforced the foundation and also the area below the courtyard. The basement contains close to 2450 sq. ft. We had originally talked with you about the potential for a small restaurant with 30 seats, but with these changes, we can add another 74 seats."
The new bakery in the commercial area will do mostly custom baking and takeout and have four seats. "With this modification request, we are looking for a net increase in seating in the restaurant by adding 74 seats to have a total on site of 104 seats."
France calculated that the project would need an additional 29 parking spaces, based on zoning codes and advised the board that he is currently exploring some options including sharing spaces.
He stressed that there is no change in the sewer or water requirements since the original calculations for this contemplated correct number of restaurant seats. "Originally, there were plans for 49 bedrooms in Boynton Meadows, but nine of those were knocked out of the plan resulting in more sewer capacity," he said. In addition, he noted there is no increase in the impervious surface, and no impact on the wetlands.
One area of change for this amendment will include installation of a handicapped ramp to the lower level and a set of stairs that will be unobtrusive, locating them in an alcove area, and reuse of an existing walkway. "The original design has two egresses and they are still on the plan," he said.
Member Tim Svarczkopf suggested the use of 'interconnectivity' between the properties - 134 Main St and the Groton Inn property - as a potential way to handle any needed parking.
Planner George Barringer stated, "I hope we can accommodate this. I suggest you ask for a waiver (on the parking). Everything else is in order."
Colleague Russ Burke said, "The Board has a desire to have more retail and this addressed that. I think it is a nice use of space and would be a positive." He suggested looking at off hours parking with other businesses that may have other space available. "The biggest issue is parking and the Board is willing to entertain creative approaches."
Based on their comments, France will return to the Board with a plan for parking in the near future.