Salt Box replacement in the works

Double-click to enlarge.

Concept plans (above) for the redevelopment of the Salt Box property at 626 Main Street were informally presented at Wednesday night’s Planning Board meeting by Tom Geagan, a consultant working with the new owners. The short presentation occurred in the midst of a broader review of the draft language incorporating Mixed-Use Village Overlay zoning changes, a project the Planning Board has been working on for some time. The consultant described the plans as very preliminary, the “first swipe of a broad brush,” and as reflecting the possibility that the zoning changes under discussion would be enacted.

The current building (15,060 square feet, according to the assessor’s property record card on file) would be replaced by four buildings totaling just over 25,000 square feet, or a 60+% increase in square footage.  Proposed parking would increase from about 65 currently to 186, reflecting zoning requirements. The parking is shown as overflowing onto adjacent residential lots also owned by the developer. The consultant also indicated that future expansion plans may include residential development on the hill (Lot A) to the east with possible pathways to connect to Bolton Country Manor and the office park. Lot 2, Lot 4, and Lot A are zoned residential. Lot 1 is zoned business.

The consultant suggested as well that second floor apartments may be considered on one or more of the buildings in the business zoned parcel if Mixed-Use Zoning is approved for that lot.

Not shown but discussed were alterations to Main Street that would add an east-bound “deceleration” lane at the entrance and an east-bound “acceleration” lane at the exit. West-bound traffic will fend for itself in getting in and out, according to this early plan.

It would appear that this plan, if presented formally, would require multiple variances or the adoption of significant zoning changes (i.e. the adoption of a Mixed-Use Village Overlay), or both, in order to gain approval. This property is located within the heart of the historic district and in the residential area of the village.

The 12-minute discussion can be heard here. Audio quality is not up to our usual standards but is clear enough to understand.


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3 Responses to Salt Box replacement in the works

  1. Stephanie says:

    Roland, do you have any idea what type of stores are looking to go in there? I hope that they build the structures so that they blend well within the historic district. It would be nice if there would be some consideration for people who may walk or bike from within the village. I don’t believe the sidewalks extend completely through this area, which means that even though they are close by, they still encourage driving.

  2. Stephanie says:

    Roland, just to correct myself, the sidewalk does extend to the Saltbox; it stops before the animal hospital.

  3. boltoncenter says:

    No, the consultant did not say explicitly what may be proposed as far as sense is that it’s kind of early in the process to know much. I think that they would probably want leases in hand before doing too much in the way of redevelopment and that right now they are just playing with different ideas. However, he did say that he hoped that the mix of businesses could be such that parking usage could be spread out–ie some tenants that would see peak traffic during the day and others in the evening, for instance. He mentioned restaurants as one possibility for some of the space and I’ve heard separate reports that there may be interest in an Italian restaurant as well as a Dunkin’ Donuts. I will say this also–the 14,000 s.f. square building shown on the drawing above (with the driveway extending all the way around it) looks very similar to others that we’ve seen that turned out to represent a chain pharmacy with a drive-thru window.

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