A vote of approval from the Middletown Zoning Board of Review on Tuesday night has paved the way for the state Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to set up a in Middletown with a five-year lease.
The new DMV branch will move into the shopping plaza at the corner of East Main and Valley roads, into the space currently occupied by . To accommodate the extra traffic and business, landlord and property owner Kenneth Alves plans to turn the vacant lot next door on Valley Road into a parking lot. The customer’s entrance to the DMV will be located on the west or backside of the shopping plaza, while the employees’ entrance will be located within the shopping plaza itself, he said.
In a unanimous vote Tuesday night, the Zoning Board granted a variance to allow for 16 parking additional spaces to be constructed for the project beyond what the zoning regulations had allowed. Combined, the two adjacent shopping center parking lots will provide 87 spaces on the original lot and 43 parking spaces on the newer lot, for a total of 130 spaces, according to Alves, who spoke before the board.
Following Tuesday night’s vote, Alves said the parking lot variance was the last hurdle the deal needed to clear to go forward. The DMV has pre-negotiated a 5-year lease of the space, with a 5-year option to extend, he said.
The target move-in date is November of 2011, Alves said.
The 16 additional parking spaces were requested to accommodate the DMV’s customers and employees without negatively impacting the parking spaces allotted for the other businesses and tenants within the shopping plaza. Alves said the West Main Road branch has been averaging 35 cars in the lot per day since it opened in the spring.
The new DMV branch will be located on a busline, one of the state’s requirements for the new location.
Alves also owns the shopping plaza at 999 West Main Road where the reopened on May 2. The DMV moved there this spring after the former location on Valley Road after its lease expired and the state was unable to find an alternate location.
The piano store at the East Main Road shopping plaza is swapping spaces with the temporary DMV branch and will relocate to the West Main Road plaza, according to Alves.
Other Zoning Board Business
In other business conducted at the Middletown Zoning Board of Review Tuesday night:
- The request for a Special Use Permit to build a on West Main Road within a General Business District was continued to the next Zoning Board meeting due to a scheduling conflict.
- A request for a Special Use Permit to construct an open roof to provide additional outdoor seating at was denied after neighbors expressed concerns over the expansion, given that alcohol is served there.
- The Zoning Board voted to approve 's request for a special use permit to serve beer, wine and mixed coffee-based cocktails with waitered table service. The final approval to grant a liquor license will rest with the Middletown Town Council after a public hearing.