By DAN HEATH
PLATTSBURGH — Plans for a new Kinney Drugs at the former Checkerhills Farm site received conditional approval from the Plattsburgh City Planning Board on Monday night.
That’s where the existing store adjacent to the property would move; no decision has been made on what would happen to that building.
Dr. Thomas Brown, who owns the Checkerhills Farm property with Matt Sames and Bill Davis, said demolition is slated to begin toward the end of January, after the Clinton County Christmas Bureau vacates the building and the partners are able to sell what they can from the interior. Demolition will force Bob’s One Stop and the redemption center to move farther north on the property.
He said they will seek bids on the project as soon as possible, as Kinney is still waiting to hear if the project is a go.
“They want to be in there Oct. 1 (2013),” Brown said.
The partners will continue to own the property and would lease the store to Kinney Drugs.
Fesette Realty owner Neil Fesette said he and one of his agents, Steve LaBombard, worked with the property owners to negotiate a lease deal with Kinney Drugs. He said it allows for an upgrade to the new Kinney Drug store prototype, similar to the one on Cornelia Street in Plattsburgh.
“This solidifies them on Boynton Avenue for many years to come,” Fesette said.
The new store would be about 11,635 square feet, up from about 9,000 square feet at the present location. Its facade would feature 4 feet of medium brown split-face masonry on the bottom and beige Hardie-board siding above.
The entrance would be on the southwest corner of the building. There would be a drive-through pharmacy window on the east side.
Access to the property would be available from both Boynton Avenue and Veterans Lane.
The pharmacy and stockroom would be located in the rear of the store, with registers up front.
Parking areas would be on the south and west sides of the store. Lights in the parking area would be about 25 feet in height, designed to focus illumination downward to keep it from spilling off the property.
STORM RUNOFF SYSTEM
Karl Weiss of Robert M. Sutherland said the project involves construction of catch basins and an underground stormwater runoff collection system. The property would also be graded to keep runoff on site, so the collection systems can work and eventually send the water to the city stormwater collection line on Boynton Avenue.
“We’re actually improving the way stormwater is being managed currently,” he said, adding it has been designed to meet State Department of Environmental Conservation standards for 10-year and 100-year storm events.
The project also includes improvements and better delineation on Monroe Way, located between the Checkerhills building and the existing Kinney Drugs, which provides access to the other businesses on the property.
Neighbors voiced concerns about the project.
Terry Drake lives at the southeastern corner of Lozier Place and Boynton Avenue, while Esther Dominy’s home is on the southwest corner.
Drake said while she is not opposed to a new Kinney store, she has had problems in the past with stormwater runoff flowing onto her property. She said trucks leaving Monroe Way often drive over the curb and onto her driveway. That will only get worse if Monroe Way is made narrower, she said.
Dominy said trucks that leave Kinney and head west have to cross the center line on Boynton Avenue and do so again if they try to make the turn to Route 22/374. She said traffic already backs up rapidly when a train goes through the crossing on Boynton Avenue.
Chris McLear said he owns property at 196 and 198 Oak Street. He is concerned about the proximity of the Veterans Lane entrance and the intersection of Oak and Boynton Avenue, especially for those who want to turn left onto Veterans Lane, which is already problematic.
The plan was approved with several conditions. The main one was to evaluate the need for a dedicated left-turn lane from the eastbound lane of Boynton onto Veterans Lane.
One possibility is to include that in the city’s plan to rebuild Boynton between North Catherine Street and Oak Street next summer. City Engineer Kevin Farrington said the city would be remiss if it didn’t look at that, as it would not only benefit Kinney but also the other businesses on Veterans Lane.
Another condition of approval was for construction of a sidewalk along Boynton Avenue and one to the front of the store.
Email Dan Heath: firstname.lastname@example.org