They 'love' Dave's, but not neighborhood traffic

Posted

Spring Grove residents are excited about the former Benny’s at Wildes Corner becoming a Dave’s Marketplace, but they don’t want the traffic they believe a neighborhood access road would bring.

And Carpionato Group, that owns the 26.5-acre site, is prepared to keep the access closed provided the state approves another traffic signal on West Shore Road.

The City Planning Board heard nothing but praise for what is being billed as the best Dave’s in the state Wednesday night.

“We love, love Dave’s,” said Maureen McNamara of Spring Grove, who has coordinated the campaign to keep access from the dead end street to the former Benny’s site closed. Residents fear opening the road would make it a cut through to avoid Wildes Corner and increase neighborhood traffic, raising safety concerns for children and residents.

Kelly Coates, president of Carpionato Group that bought the 30 Benny’s sites when the Rhode Island chain closed, is agreeable to keeping the road closed on one condition. He told the zoning board under the terms of the lease with Dave’s, the company wants a traffic light on West Shore Road near the Taco Bell, and if it can’t get it then it wants the access road open.

That might be easy if it was up to the city; however, West Shore Road is a state road and the traffic plan as well as a traffic signal will need state DOT approval. Coates said the plan for storm water runoff from the site will also need Department of Environmental Management review and without those approvals the project couldn’t move forward.

As the petition for master plan approval came at the tail end of a lengthy Planning Board agenda, Coates met with neighbors in the vestibule to council chambers to hear their concerns and answer questions prior to the formal informational meeting. Noting he is a Warwick resident and shops at Dave’s, Coates promised the Wildes Corner Dave’s – located only a short distance from where Dave Cesario started the business from a fruit stand – “will be the best Dave’s.” He said the company would pour more than $5 million into renovating the store. He also promised to talk with the Salks of Salk’s Hardware at the head of Spring Grove and offer at Carpionato Group’s expense to curb the parking lot so as to reduce the use of the lot as a cut-through. Coates also agreed to the closure of the access to Spring Grove with the exception of pedestrian use and golf carts if the DOT approves the traffic signal.

McNamara handed out a thick packet to Planning Board members outlining arguments to keeping the access to the site closed and a petition signed by more than 60 neighbors. Standing with her were half a dozen neighbors who also welcomed Dave’s but urged that the access used by Star Market 30 years ago remain closed. The exception was Helen Maccrone, who has lived on Spring Grove for 62 years. She reasoned when her neighbors get to be her age – she is 86 – they’d welcome the convenience of the access. In voicing his concerns about the access, John Reiss added some levity to the meeting when he suggested the neighbors take up a collection and buy Maccrone a golf cart.

Other aspects of the development that include a 6,500-square foot-retail store next to Dave’s and new buildings on West Shore Road including a bank, restaurant and retail outlet; an access from the property owned by Frank Paolino where O’Reilly Auto Parts and Dollar General are located and the rezoning of residential land to the back of what would become Dave’s were hardly discussed. The access to the Paolino property was viewed as either a good or potentially bad thing. Access from the Paolino property, it was reasoned, would reduce traffic at Wildes Corner. On the other hand, it could turn into a cut-through.

No questions were raised about Carpionato’s request to rezone a good portion of the 26.5-acre site as open space. Coates said the request is being made to assuage concerns that at some future date the company would return with plans for a condominium development. Much of the land is wetlands.

The Planning Board voted unanimously to grant master plan approval. It also approved a provision that should the state approve a traffic signal on West Shore Road that the access to Spring Grove be closed with the exception of pedestrian traffic, golf cart and for emergency use.

Comments

7 comments on this story | Please log in to comment by clicking here
Please log in or register to add your comment
justanidiot

donts bild it. go to hoxie if you wants to shop at daves

Tuesday, September 17
The Skipper

There's Already a DAVE'S Marketplace at Wilds corners. If you don't already go to there? What make you think there's suddenly going to be a gridlock of traffic? Granted at first there will be chaos , but in a few months after that "new Market smell" goes away? It will probably go back to the same amount of traffic and congestion that's already there with no real change or effect to the locals..

Tuesday, September 17
justanidiot

we wants change and progress just so long as everthing stays the same

Wednesday, September 18
Cat

The traffic at Wildes Corner is already gridlocked at rush hour. It takes forever to get through the lights and you are still going slow either direction you turn. Adding another light will just make it longer to wait and will push the back up of cars further down the road than it is now. You will need to reassess the traffic flow and make the necessary adjustments in order for a light to solve the issue. Most of us would not use the neighborhood access road. I highly doubt it will be much more of a traffic issue if you open it up.

Thursday, September 19
SMH

Cat, who's "us". Do you live in Wilds Corner? It will be a nightmare for those folks who live at the top of Spring Grove. They'll have traffic all day and night. Opening the road to the back of Dave's will just make getting out of their road worse. Can you imagine the mostly peaceful, dead-end road you've lived on for the last 25 years now has access to the back of a new Dave's Market, Citizens Bank and other retailers? There will now be cars driving by your house day and night. Of course people are going to use it.

It's a bad idea and it should never be opened to cars, period.

Thursday, September 19
GnomesAndSnails

Open it up. Pulling in and out of that parking lot is a nightmare. Especially if you have to turn left.

Friday, September 20
Mac2442r

How quickly they forget that before Benny’s it was Star market for years. And where citizens is now was a block of stores with a nice cream and next to dunkin which now is a parking lot was another group of stores the original home of D&L shooting and a hot weiner shop a clothing store.

2 days ago