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Quicklee's

July 21, 2021 - 8:12am

quicklees_2.jpg

The City of Batavia Planning & Development Committee on Tuesday night approved the site plan and special use permit application by Quicklee’s to renovate the former Bob Evans Restaurant at 204 Oak St. into a convenience store/fuel station with drive-thru restaurant.

Following a 10-minute discussion that focused on proper signage and traffic flow, the committee unanimously approved both referrals – giving the go-ahead on the site plan contingent upon developers adding “signage to direct vehicles going into the drive-thru from blocking the exit between the canopy and the building so they can exit out onto Noonan Drive.”

The special use permit allows Quicklee’s to operate as a convenience store and quick-service restaurant.

Patricia Bittar, director of land development projects at WM Schutt Associates, and Lou Terragnoli, director of real estate for Quicklee’s, appeared before the PDC at the City Centre Council Board Room in anticipation of gaining final approvals for the project, which was introduced (and reported first on The Batavian) in late April.

Plans call for the reuse of the 3,771-square-foot restaurant and involves construction of a four-pump fuel station island with canopy and underground fuel storage tanks. The convenience store with retail fuel sales will take up about two-thirds of the space, with the drive-through restaurant – Quicklee’s is in negotiations with Tim Hortons – using the remaining space.

Last month, the PDC conducted an environmental review, which showed no adverse effects, but held off on approving the site plan or special use permits until the applicant provided details on traffic flow patterns, including an updated study by the New York State Department of Transportation.

Also, in June, the city’s Zoning Board of Appeals approved area variances that permit the business to be within 500 feet of a church (Emmanuel Baptist at 190 Oak St. (corner of Noonan Drive) and to have 40 parking spaces instead of the required 68.

Questions from the PDC last night focused on signage on Noonan Drive to ensure that motorists are informed of the proper way to access the location as members were concerned about the stacking of vehicles, especially near the fuel pump island.

The DOT traffic study submitted to the PDC calls for the removal of a proposed right-out driveway (onto Route 98) and that “all site access utilize the existing Noonan Drive roadway.” Additionally, the internal access driveway will remain that connects to the Super 8 Hotel parking lot behind the restaurant.

The study also indicated that during peak times of 7:15 to 8:15 a.m. and 4 to 5 p.m., the business is expected to generate an additional 79 entering/71 exiting vehicle trips, and 53 entering/55 exiting vehicle trips, respectively. Terragnoli said the site plan can accommodate stacking of up to 15 cars.

Terragnoli said renovations of the inside of the restaurant and construction of the fuel island will start in September, with completion by the end of the year. Currently, the Quicklee’s chain has 23 locations – mostly in Livingston and Monroe counties.

Photo at top: Architect's rendering of the new Quicklee's business at 204 Oak St.

June 11, 2021 - 1:51pm

The City of Batavia could be getting a third Tim Hortons.

A spokesman for the Quicklee’s convenience store chain Thursday night said the family-owned, Avon-based company is talking with Tim Hortons’ representatives about operating a drive-thru restaurant at the site of the former Bob Evans Restaurant at 204 Oak St. (Route 98).

Louis Terragnoli, director of real estate and development for Quicklee’s, was on the Zoom call of the meeting of the Genesee County Planning Board, which approved a site plan and area variances for a 2,771-square-foot convenience store with 1,000-square-foot drive-thru and a four-pump fuel station.

“We’re in negotiations with Tim Hortons right now and let’s keep our fingers crossed that it keeps going the right way,” Terragnoli said, adding that the company will be completely remodeling the interior and exterior of the building.

Quicklee’s is required to obtain variances since the service station is 165 feet from a church (less than the minimum 500 feet) and the proposed number of parking spaces is 40 (less than the minimum 68).

Terragnoli said he spoke with the Rev. Tom Tharp at Emmanuel Baptist Church, 190 Oak St., and said the pastor was in favor of the project.

As far as parking spaces, Terragnoli said the 40 spots in Quicklee’s plan are adequate.

“From a business perspective, we are overparked. Forty is fine. Sixty-eight is something we don’t have at any location,” he said. “There won’t be any congestion … we’ll have plenty of spots. We will be accessing the site from Noonan Drive. We have a report from the DOT (Department of Transportation) that says that is the best way to do it.”

He also said the company will add a landscaping buffer along the southern part of the property facing Noonan Drive.

“We want to shield the dispensers as much as we can from the church property, so we want to do the right thing for our neighbor,” he said.

Terragnoli added that they will install two handicap accessible curb cuts at the corner and put in a sidewalk “so pedestrians can safely ingress and egress from our site” and dumpsters will be relocated away from the Noonan Drive entrance area for safety purposes.

The Batavia location will be Quicklee’s 24th and could be open by early fall.

Planners recommended approval of the site plan and area variances. The referral now will go before the City Planning & Development Committee at its meeting on Tuesday and then to the City Zoning Board of Appeals.

In other action, the planning board recommended approval of:

  • A site plan for a 107,138-square-foot addition on the southwest corner of the existing plant for warehousing and manufacturing at Liberty Pumps, 7000 Apple Tree Ave., Bergen. Modifications include a stormwater prevention plan and archaeological impact study.

The project also will include a new entrance and exit from Route 19.

  • Zoning text amendments from the Oakfield Town Board for the entire Town of Oakfield to allow major solar collection systems to the Land Conservation (LC) and Agricultural-Residential (AR) Districts and to add public and private utilities to the LC District.

County Planning Director Felipe Oltramari said the town wants to amend the zoning to help advance the Cider Solar Farm project of Hecate Energy – a 500-megawatt system being developed under the New York State Office of Renewable Energy Siting.

“As a state-sited project, they don’t necessarily need to follow the local zoning process, but it does make it easier for the company because they won’t have to go in front of a judge and argue why they can override the municipal zoning,” Oltramari said. “This makes it a little more friendly to that project.”

  • A special use permit for Chad Downs, 1300 McVean Road, Darien, to place a pest control business in his home, which sits in a Low Density Residential (LDR) District.

The planning department recommends approval with the modification that the storage and disposal of herbicides, pesticides, and other hazardous materials must be conducted in accordance with applicable State and Federal regulations.

June 9, 2021 - 8:23pm

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The Genesee County Planning Department is recommending approval of a site plan review submitted by Plug Power Inc., the Latham-based company specializing in the development of hydrogen fuel cells systems for applications such as heavy-duty freight and forklifts.

The referral is one of 15 on the agenda of the county planning board’s meeting scheduled for 7 p.m. Thursday via Zoom videoconferencing.

According to information provided to the planning department, the site plan to place the green hydrogen facility at the Western New York Science & Technology Advanced Manufacturing Park includes three structures – an 8,000-square-foot operations and maintenance building, a 40,000-square-foot electrolyzer building and a 68,000-square-foot compressor building.

STAMP, located on Crosby Road in the Town of Alabama, is designated as a Technology (T-1) District.

Additional documentation indicates the Genesee County Economic Development Center, which owns STAMP, is in the final stages of closing the sale of 29.884 acres to be allocated to the Plug Power venture, which is being called Gateway Project.

The full environmental assessment form filled out by Plug Power reveals that construction will take place in two phases, with phase one to commence in March 2022 and phase 2 to be completed in June 2023.

It is projected that the company will use 280,000 gallons of water per day, with expected additional capacity from the construction of two new water lines. Company officials state that 70,500 gallons of wastewater will be generated each day. The grounds also will feature a stormwater management facility.

Approximately 16 tanker trucks will come to the facility each day on a reconstructed Crosby Road to provide a new access path. Construction is expected to take place from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Once complete, it will be a 24-hour operation.

Last Thursday, Genesee County Economic Development Center directors approved approximately $2.8 million in sales tax incentives related to the construction of the electrical substation.

The GCEDC reported that Plug Power is investing $232 million the company to build the facility, which is estimated to create 68 full-time jobs.

The company also is investing $55 million toward the construction a substation that will enable 100-percent renewable, reliable electricity at less than $0.035/kwh to future tenants in partnership with the New York Power Authority and National Grid.

Other referrals of note:

  • Special use permit, area variance and site plan review for a Quicklee’s convenience store and four-pump fuel station island at the former Bob Evans Restaurant location in a Commercial (C-2) District at 204 Oak St. (Route 98) in the City of Batavia.

The area variance is necessary because the service station is 165 feet from a church (less than the minimum 500 feet) and the proposed number of parking spaces is 40 (less than the minimum 68).

Patricia Bittar, director of land development projects at WM Schutt Associates, filed the application, stating that the proposed project will take up 2,771 square feet for the convenience store and 1,000 square feet for a drive-thru restaurant.

The planning department recommends approval. The applicant also will have to go in front of the City Planning & Development Committee and Zoning Board of Appeals.

  • Site plan review for a 107,138-square-foot addition for warehousing and manufacturing to Liberty Pumps, 7000 Apple Tree Ave., Bergen

The planning department recommends approval with modifications pertaining to stormwater prevention and archaeological impact documentation.

  • As previously reported on The Batavian, a zoning map change request from the Le Roy Town Board to rezone seven parcels from Residential (R-2) to Light Industrial (I-2) District to expand the GCEDC-owned Le Roy Food & Tech Park on Route 19 ad Randall Road in the Town of Le Roy.

This action could open the door for Great Lakes Cheese of Hiram, Ohio, to build a $500 million processing plant at the site.

The planning department recommends approval since the Comprehensive Plan adopted by the Town of Le Roy in 2017 identifies this area in its Future Land Use Plan as Agriculture and adjacent to Industrial.

  • Zoning text amendments from the Oakfield Town Board for the entire Town of Oakfield to allow major solar collection systems to the Land Conservation (LC) and Agricultural-Residential (AR) Districts and to add public and private utilities to the LC District.

The towns of Oakfield and Elba are gearing up for the proposed construction of a 500-megawatt solar farm by Hecate Energy, which today announced that is has filed an application with the New York State Office of Renewable Energy Siting.

If approved and constructed, the Cider Solar Farm would be the largest solar project ever built in New York State.

Hecate Energy’s press release indicated that the $500 million private infrastructure investment is expected to create moe than 500 construction jobs and will be capable of supplying 920,000 megawatt-hours of renewable electricity per year – enough to power more than 120,000 average New York households.

The planning department is recommending approval.

  • A special use permit for Chad Downs, 1300 McVean Road, Darien, to place a pest control business in his home, which sits in a Low Density Residential (LDR) District.

The planning department recommends approval with the modification that the storage and disposal of herbicides, pesticides and other hazardous materials must be conducted in accordance with applicable State and Federal regulations.

Architect's rendering at top: 3D view of the Plug Power facility to go at WNY STAMP. The rectangle building at the front is the compressor building and the long building behind it is the electrolyzer building. The operations and maintenance building is the smaller structure at right.

April 25, 2021 - 8:59pm

Owners of Quicklee’s Convenience Stores have their eyes on the former site of the Bob Evans Restaurant at 204 Oak St. for a convenience store with a retail fuel station.

The City of Batavia Planning & Development Committee last week reviewed the sketch plan submitted by Patricia Bittar, director of land development projects for Quicklee’s, which has about two dozen stores/retail fuel locations – mostly in Livingston and Monroe counties.

“Right now, the site plan looks favorable. It fits really nice there, you know, with the Thruway exiting,” PDC Chair Duane Preston said.

According to a letter from Bittar to City Code Enforcement Officer Doug Randall, the proposed project involves converting the existing 3,771 square-foot building into two sections: 2,700-plus square feet for the convenience store and the remaining 1,000-plus square feet for a “quick service restaurant partner with a drive-thru window.”

Additional aspects of the site modification plan are as follows:

  • The 12-foot wide drive-thru lane will be situated along the east and north building walls, with a 13-foot wide escape lane adjacent to it;
  • The fueling area will be placed south of the existing structure, and will feature four fuel pumps under a 48-foot by 48-foot canopy;
  • Some of the existing concrete curb and asphalt pavement will be removed, and will be relocated on the site;
  • The existing curb cut onto Noonan Drive and the access drive along the east edge of the site will be maintained, while a right-out only curb cut, 12 feet in width, is proposed along the west edge of the site, connecting to Oak Street (Route 98);
  • Parking spaces would be reduced from 57 to 40, with sections of the existing parking area to be converted to green space. The company would need an area variance due to the fact that 68 parking spaces are required in that amount of space.
  • The existing site lighting on the building and in the parking area will be maintained, and lights will be added to the fuel pumps’ canopy.

Preston said the PDC is not thrilled about the right turn only idea onto Oak Street, so close to the Thruway on-ramp.

“We had a couple concerns about an exit onto the (New York State) DOT (Department of Transportation) area going into the Thruway,” he said. “Obviously, we’re not in favor of that because if a car … gets in the wrong lane and exits to the right, they’re right in the Thruway entrance and then, you would foresee a situation where someone might turn to do a U-turn and get into an accident.”

He said he did like that the location has only four gas pumps and a drive-thru “for some fast food for people (coming) off the Thruway.”

A second area variance would be required since the store is located within 500 feet of a public entrance to a church (Emmanuel Baptist at 190 Oak St.).

The district is zoned Commercial, so the convenience store/gas station would be an acceptable use.

According to Quicklee’s website, the corporation has been owned and operated by the Bruckel family of Avon since 1995, with its business plan focused on combination stores featuring fast food, car washes and fuel stations.

One of its most recent stores is a travel center off of I-390 South, featuring a fully stocked convenience store, car wash, Dunkin’ Donuts and Calabresella's New York Style Deli, along with a truck stop equipped with a diesel mechanic shop, overnight parking, showers and laundry.

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