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May 18, 2022 - 4:00pm

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After Town of Batavia Planning Board members gave the final approvals to Benderson Development for two new commercial buildings in the former Kmart parking lot on Lewiston Road, they had but one question: "who is it?"

The rep from Benderson wouldn't say.

He said he couldn't release the names until leases are signed. He said that lease signing could come soon for at least one potential tenant, with construction to begin on that building in July.

Benderson is planning:

  • A 4,000-square-foot restaurant with a drive-thru and bypass lane to be located in the southwest corner of the property;
  • A 6,752-square-foot retail/restaurant building with a 2,000-square-foot endcap coffee shop with drive-through in the southeast corner of the property.

On Tuesday, the planning board approved the project's environmental review, special use permit for a drive-through, and site review plan.  With those final approvals, Benderson is ready to sign agreements with the intended tenants of the buildings.

Before the vote on the special use permit, Chairwoman Kathy Jasinski noted that the only opposition had come from pizza shop owner Jerry Arena, who objected to the entire project.  She said it was her understanding that Arena had modified his position and town engineer Steve Mountain said that is correct. 

"He's not here tonight so I'm assuming that he's okay with that," Jasinski said. "So we really don't have any opposition." 

UPDATE: Jerry Arena said he was not aware of the meeting and that his position hasn't changed at all.  He still opposes the project.

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