Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Development site put up for sale

By Meghan Foley Sentinel Staff
WINCHESTER — There’s a new twist in the controversial plan for a combined convenience store, gas station and Dunkin’ Donuts here, and it’s not another lawsuit.
The property on which the store is supposed to be built, 4 Warwick Road, is for sale as legal wrangling over the proposed project continues.
The property, which is at the corner of Routes 10 and 78, is being offered for $595,000, according to a listing on the ReMax Town and Country website.
A message left Monday afternoon for Teofilo Salema, manager of S.S. Baker’s Realty Co. of Keene, asking why the property was for sale, wasn’t returned. S.S Baker’s owns the property and is proposing the project. It also owns other Dunkin’ Donuts stores in the area.
The roughly 1.19-acre property is valued at $64,700, according to town assessing records.
Meanwhile, one of the two court cases involving the project has been resolved, while the other has been appealed to the N.H. Supreme Court in Concord.
The first lawsuit was brought by S.S. Baker’s against the town after the Winchester Planning Board denied the proposal for the convenience store, gas station and Dunkin’ Donuts in July 2012.
The case was heard in Cheshire County Superior Court in Keene, and in April 2013, Judge John C. Kissinger Jr. upheld the board’s decision. Kissinger said in his ruling the board was justified in denying the application based on traffic safety concerns, and determining that the project would overwhelm the site. He also said that the board acted within the law in denying the project because it didn’t adhere to certain design standards.
S.S Baker’s then appealed Kissinger’s ruling to the state Supreme Court in May 2013. The court accepted the case in June of that year, and in March, it affirmed Kissinger’s decision.
Around the same time S.S. Baker’s appealed the case to the Supreme Court, it filed a second site plan application for the project with the Winchester Planning Board.
The second plan, while similar to the first one, had some differences. First, the proposed 3,500-square-foot building was going to be 4 feet shorter than first suggested. In addition, vehicles wouldn’t be allowed to make left turns from the store’s parking lot onto Main Street (Route 10), and up to 11 cars could fit in the drive-through lane for Dunkin’ Donuts. The drive-through lane in the first plan had space for only 10 vehicles.
The planning board approved the second plan in July 2013.
A month later, the Winchester Zoning Board of Adjustment decided not to grant a request from Stanley S. Plifka Jr., owner of Kulick’s Inc., to rehear, reconsider and reverse the planning board’s approval of the project.
Plifka, who operates Kulick’s Market at 30 Warwick Road, opposes the project.
Plifka said Monday he isn’t against Dunkin’ Donuts, but doesn’t think the proposed project is good for the property.
“It’s a very dangerous intersection for the building they’re trying to put up,” he said.
Plifka then appealed the planning board and zoning board decisions to Cheshire County Superior Court, and in February, Judge Kissinger upheld the boards’ decisions once again. He then denied a motion filed by Kulick’s Inc. to reconsider his ruling in March.
On April 30, the N.H. Supreme Court accepted Kulick’s Inc.’s appeal of Kissinger’s ruling. That case remains pending.
Meghan Foley can be reached at 352-1234, extension 1436, or Follow her on Twitter @MFoleyKS.


Anonymous said...

His price tag is an excellent example of Teo's over the top thinking!

Can't fix stupid! said...

Maybe we all can chip in and buy it for BIG Daddy's so he can expand his used junk trailer lot on Main Street to the corner. Maybe that would please some...