continued DPC members had issues with both the 2011 plan and the current proposal. The committee does not have approval authority, but offers suggestions on projects before they go to the town’s Planning and Zoning boards.
The current plan calls for three curb cuts with two right-in/right-out accesses and one entrance at a traffic light. The committee said it would be best to eliminate one curb cut. Members also had issues with traffic flow for the site because cars and larger trucks may intersect as cars attempt to go through the restaurant’s drive-thru. They suggested moving the restaurant farther from the convenience store and past the wetland area, saving the area for a future project.
“There’s going to have to be some more internal circulation because it’s zoned general commercial,” said Mike Morelli, Bethlehem director of Economic Planning and Development. “Because if and when the economy improves, you’re going to have more office and retail space on the adjacent site, so we’re trying to come up with a more master plan.”
Gillespie said the property owner might not back down on the curb cut issue because it took a lot to convince him to install certain landscaping and right-in/right-out entrances.
The committee recommended developers speak with the state DOT about traffic flow and the entrances into the site, update its wetland study and approach the town for a variance to the setback requirements.
Bohler Engineering is also representing Price Chopper in a project to install a new drive-thru pharmacy window at its Glenmont store. The DPC said there might be issues with the close proximity of drive-thru and entrance into the parking lot. Members said it could cause confusion for drivers and developers may need to eliminate parking spaces from the plans. The elimination of more parking spaces could result in not having enough spaces for a plaza of that size under the town code.
Both projects are expected to appear before the Planning Board a later date.