WINCHESTER, N.H. -- The town's zoning board of adjustment last month upheld the planning board's ruling that a special exception was valid for a developer's application for a combination Dunkin' Donuts, convenience store and gas pumps.
Winchester Land Use Administrator Margaret Sharra said the local ZBA sided with the planning board's decision to allow S.S. Baker Realty Co. LLC the authority to construct a drive-thru window for the establishment it wants to build at 4 Warwick Road.
Sharra said the planning board denied the developer's first application in 2012 due to traffic issues before approving a revised version this year. S.S. Baker Realty's appeal to Superior Court was denied, so an appeal was filed with New Hampshire Supreme Court and that case is currently pending. Though the planning board rejected the first application last year, the Winchester ZBA granted a special exception to S.S. Baker Realty to construct the drive-thru.
However, Sharra said S.S. Baker Realty was unable to begin developing it because Stanley Plifka, the owner of a local grocery store called Kulick's Market (which also has gas pumps), had appealed the ZBA's decision and the case was tied up in Superior Court. Sharra said an appeal of any kind freezes construction of a project. Plifka, Sharra said, then made the case that the developer's one-year window to start building had passed, but on Thursday, Aug. 29, the ZBA upheld the special exception previously given because S.S. Baker Realty was not allowed to begin construction.
Sharra said the planning board approved of S.S. Baker Realty's second application because its members felt there was enough change from the first one. She said the second application proposed a smaller building and an adjustment to the exits. Plifka, whose attorney Kelly Dowd appealed the approval to both the ZBA and Superior Court, filed a motion for a rehearing with the ZBA. Dowd said this was denied and he will now have to file in Superior Court.
Plifka told the Reformer he is the third-generation owner of Kulick's Market, which was opened in 1909 and stands at 30 Warwick Road.
Domenic Poli can be reached at email@example.com, or 802-254-2311, ext. 277. You can follow him on Twitter @dpoli_reformer.