June 05, 2020

Developer seeks permits to enlarge store

CALAIS — If representatives of Hannaford Brothers Co. of Scarborough obtain the necessary city and state permits, the Gay’s Shop `n Save supermarket building at 90 North St. will be enlarged by more than 10,000 square feet to become one of the larger food stores in Washington County.

Representatives of Hannaford Brothers were in Calais Tuesday night to meet with the Calais Planning Board about a request for a zone change. A portion of their property would be changed from an R-1 designation, which is an urban residential zone, to a C-2, or retail and service zone.

Michael D. Brescia, a real estate representative for Hannaford, and Jan Wiegman, chief engineer for the company, were reluctant to discuss the details of the expansion plans and said they would be addressed later during the site-plan portion of the proposal.

Brescia and Wiegman agreed that preliminary plans called for the store to expand from its present 19,000 square feet of floor space to 30,000 square feet.

“… We would not propose to rezone the section that is next to Calais Avenue, which would maintain the residential zone along (the) back section and allow us to have contiguous property here as commercial C-2,” Brescia said.

Brescia said that if the Planning Board approved the request for a zone change, the C-2 zone line would be redrawn and follow the property line behind Ames Department Store and the Gay’s Store.

“This parcel is an L-shaped parcel. So what we are proposing is to move it (the C-2 zone) to the rear, but not to Calais Avenue,” he said. He said if the company obtained the necessary permits, the store would be expanded both to the side and to the rear, but not beyond the back of the adjacent Ames Store.

Planning Board member John Mitchell asked Brescia if the company owned the property behind the store. Brescia said Hannaford Brothers leased the land from Hadcar Corp. of Portland.

“Does the owner of the property from whom you lease own to Calais Avenue?” Mitchell asked.

“No, there is a home right here (on Calais Avenue) and there is another parcel that is not owned by the firm we lease from,” Brescia said.

Planning Board Chairman Lee Stover told the Hannaford representatives that the only action the Planning Board could take Tuesday night was to set a date for a public hearing on the issue.

Ralph Shannon, who owns a home on Calais Avenue near the proposed zone change, told the Planning Board he would need time to study the Hannaford plan before he could decide whether to oppose the zone change.

`I have some concerns about how far back the building goes, and how close the vehicles that will be transporting the goods that go in the back door will be coming to the residential area…,” Shannon said.

Brescia said trucks would continue to enter the property by way of North Street. There were no plans to move truck traffic to Calais Avenue, he said.

Mitchell told Shannon that it appeared that all Hannaford had requested was a change so their entire lot would be zoned commercial, but Shannon pointed out that the store could be enlarged even more later.

Brescia said the company did not plan to expand beyond the proposed property line because that would block truck access to the rear of the store. Wiegman said the zone line was about 500 feet from North Street, and he and Brescia would provide an exact description of the proposed change in boundaries to the Planning Board.

The Planning Board will hold a public hearing on the matter in October.

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