By Michael Cuneo –
A new joint Dunkin Donuts/Baskin-Robbins and Take 5 Oil Change will come to Fayetteville after the city’s planning and zoning commission initially denied the request from the business.
Axis Infrastructure, the company that oversees engineering for the two new businesses, finally won an appeal at Fayetteville’s Dec. 2 city council meeting after months of requesting city officials to allow them to have a drive-through within a C-3 Highway Commercial Zoning District.
City ordinances state that there are certain conditions that, if met, warrant an exemption from the current C-3 zoning requirements that prohibits business owners from implementing drive-throughs in a commercial zoning district.
While Axis Infrastructure originally got approval from Fayetteville to build a freestanding oil change store in June, the addition of a Dunkin Donuts/Baskin Robbins-that includes a drive-through delayed the process until now.
At a September planning and zoning commission, the application was tabled, and in October, the commission voted 4-1 to deny the request from Axis Infrastructure, citing issues with traffic buildup and drive-through access as a primary concern.
After some tweaking to the proposed drive-through of the business, Fayetteville’s City council voted 5-0 to overturn the original denial from the planning and zoning commission, allowing Axis Infrastructure to finally get their new storefronts underway.
“Zoning decisions are based on specific criteria; the idea is that you apply evidence against them, and in this situation, we certainly believe that every bit of evidence in this record supports approval of this request. We respect the planning commission, but sometimes they get it wrong, and I think this is a situation where they did.” Dennis Webb, a representative for Axis Infrastructure, said at the Dec. 2 city council meeting.
Webb also noted that traffic concerns had been brought up as another Donkin Donuts in Fayetteville frequently sees traffic buildups that spill out onto the road, causing delays.
“This property is not one that my client owns, it’s not one that my client operates and we have nothing at all to do with it. The biggest issue with it is there is only one way in and one way out. That situation just does not exist [at the new proposed location].” Webb said.
Webb also touched on peak times of both the Dunkin Donuts/Baskin-Robbins and the oil change store, stating that the two wouldn’t create more traffic.
“An interesting fact about this development is that Take 5 generates an incredibly low number of trips and their peak time is in the afternoon while Dunkin Donuts peak time is during the morning.” Webb said.
The council agreed with Webb that the city’s planning and zoning commission made the wrong decision to deny the request and voted 5-0 in favor of overturning the decision.