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New oil change business nears final approval for city's west end

By Joanne Beck
Evan Gefell
Evan Gefell of Quattro Development discusses details about his proposed Take 5 oil change business on West Main Street in Batavia during this week's city Planning & Development Committee meeting.
Photo by Joanne Beck

It has taken nearly five attempts for a Take 5 oil change business to receive final blessings to move into a former T Mobile building on the west end of the city, due to special use and variance requests that agent Evan Gefell needed before proceeding with his plans.

Gefell, of Quattro Batavia LLC, agent for the proposed Take 5 oil change business at 425 West Main St., Batavia, spoke about the project during the city’s Planning and Development Committee meeting Tuesday after a preliminary meeting in May and a subsequent trip to the County Planning Board.

Fellow Quattro Development representative Peter Pavek attended in May and asked for approval to remove the existing building at the site — formerly used for the phone business — and to construct a new building with pits to do oil changes. That revision required a special use permit.

Code Enforcement Officer Doug Randall had said that per zoning, they wanted to change the number of bays, and asked if the company would be good with that, and Pavel had agreed.

Given the minimal use for a waiting area, there was also no use for so many parking spaces, and Pavek said they could reduce the parking spots and add to the green space.

“Any additional green space you can maintain, that’d be great,” committee member Ed Flynn had said.

According to company data, the sites typically get 50 vehicles per day, with variations of busiest times throughout the day — mid-morning and especially at 3 p.m. reaching peak times.

The committee gave a preliminary thumbs up, with instructions to return with a detailed site plan, which Gefell had done on Tuesday.

“So the model of this is, you stay in your car, it's a 10-minute oil change, and then you continue on. It's a little traffic generator, it doesn't require a lot of parking, it's just kind of for the staff since the user stays in their vehicle,” he said. “This allowed us to really expand the green space on site. It's increased the green space from 24 percent to 47 percent. You can see some of the trees and the buffering and landscape that we've added. You know, we're not concerned about queuing with the two bays. And I think some traffic or data was presented or provided, but peak hours, you know, it's not a significant amount of customers at one time for traffic generators.”

An average location serves 40 customers a day, he said. They don’t do ancillary services outside of oil changes, wiper blades and air filters. 

“So it’s really quick,” he said. “There’s no transmission, there’s no brakes, no anything like that. So the idea is to get in and out quickly and not have any queuing.”

The meeting included a public hearing. There was no communication submitted regarding the business, and no one signed up to speak.

The committee approved the site plan and special use permit and gave a negative declaration for the environmental review, meaning that there would be no negative impact on the environment with the business in place.

Chairman Duane Preston liked the plan, he said. 

“It’s a good plan, lots of green space,” he said. 

The committee also referred the plan to the Zoning Board of Appeals for the zoning variance as the next step in the process.

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