MERIDEN — A realty company is seeking city approval to knock down a vacant Broad Street home and build a new drive-through only Dunkin’ Donuts.
The Dunkin’ Donuts would be built at 944-950 Broad St., across the street from Cumberland Farms, according to an application filed to the Planning Commission by Graceful Bee Realty LLC, an entity of Batista Companies.
Batista Companies owns several other Dunkin’ Donuts franchises in Meriden and surrounding towns.
The drive-thru only restaurant will be roughly 900 square feet and will have 12 parking spaces, according to the application. The Dunkin’ Donuts website lists six other locations currently in Meriden.
A representative from Graceful Bee Realty couldn’t be reached for comment Monday.
The new Broad Street location would have vehicle access from Broad Street and driveway access from Pratt Street Extension.
City officials have raised concerns about the impact on traffic in the area. A traffic study commissioned by the applicant determined additional traffic could be “accommodated by the existing roadway system.” However, City Planner Bob Seale said he wants more information.
Seale specifically raised questions about the potential conflict between vehicles turning left out of the Dunkin’ Donuts site’s main driveway with vehicles turning right out of the Cumberland Farms across the street.
The Broad Street traffic lights to the left and right of both businesses, Seale said, only provide “so much of a gap to turn left out of” the proposed Dunkin’ Donuts site.
Seale said one solution could be to restrict traffic from turning left onto Broad Street and instead require vehicles to exit the Dunkin’ Donuts through the driveway extending behind the Dunkin’ Donuts onto Pratt Street Extension. Motorists could then turn left onto Broad at the intersection of Pratt and Broad.
In addition to Cumberland Farms, the area of Broad includes a Shell gas station and Dairy Queen drive-through, both of which are adjacent to the proposed Dunkin’ Donuts site.
The parcel at 944-946 Broad Street contains a vacant two-family home that would get razed for the project. Graceful Bee Realty purchased the parcel in 2015 for $300,000.
Seale said the home is located within a commercial zone, so it makes sense to replace it with a commercial tenant.
If the new Dunkin’ Donuts receives approval, Graceful Bee Realty would purchase the parcel at 950 Broad Street and a portion of the parcel at 476 Pratt St. Ext. The applicant is proposing to merge the properties at 944 and 950 Broad Street and to adjust the boundary line with 476 Pratt St. Ext.
The Planning Commission is expected to discuss the application on Wednesday, but will not take action until its October meeting at the earliest because the project still needs approval from the Inland Wetlands Commission. Harbor Brook runs behind the proposed site.
Because Broad Street is a state road, the state’s Department of Transportation would also have to review traffic concerns and sign off on the project.
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