Orient Heights Neighborhood Council members voted 18-6-1 against placing a drive thru at the Dunkin Donuts on Bennington Street in Orient Heights.
Citing traffic as the primary concern those who voted against the proposed drive thru applauded plans to upgrade the building and add outdoor seating but said the drive thru may add more congestion to an already congested street.
“The building looks beautiful,” said Paul Travaglini. “But I’m against the drive thru because it doesn’t make sense. It’s going to add to the traffic on the street.”
Owners of the Dunkin Donuts are planning a $550,000 renovation to the interior and exterior of the current 13,000 sq. ft. building and wanted to add a drive thru as an added amenity.
Attorney for Dunkin Donuts, Jeff Drago, said the building would receive a new façade, stone work, new attractive lighting, and added greenspace in and around the parking lot. The interior will be completely overhauled and add more seating for customers.
There would also be an addition of café-style outdoor seating in front of the restaurant.
The owners would need zoning relief for the drive thru aspect of the plan. No date a the Zoning Board of Appeals has been set as of yet.
The popular Orient Heights coffee shop at 951 Bennington St. would add an entrance point in its existing parking lot for the drive thru. Those exiting the drive thru would be able to only turn right onto Bennington St. according to the designs.