BENNINGTON — The local Subaru dealership is planning to expand.
Bennington Subaru has sought town approval to replace its existing dealership building and service center at 527 North Bennington Road with a new, larger facility and to construct new parking areas and sidewalks, and drainage and sewer improvements.
The goal is to begin work on the new building's foundation this fall and to complete the entire project by the fall of 2017, according to a letter to the town from Jeffrey Olesky, with Wilson Consulting Engineers of Cabot. The dealership will remain open during construction.
A land permit application received preliminary approval from Development Review Board members on Tuesday. Members did not request more information this week and are expected to make a final decision at a second hearing slated for Oct. 4, according to Bennington Planning Director Dan Monks.
The permit applicant is C.J.T., LLC the entity that owns the property. Bennington Subaru is a trade name owned by Bennington Auto Mart, LLC.
The project calls for a new, 14,400 squarefoot dealership and service center on the 6 acre property just north of the existing 12,385 squarefoot structure, which would be demolished, according to plans filed with the town's Planning Department. A reconstructed parking area would be built south of the new building, and new parking areas would be built in the field to the east.
The existing 40-foot curb cut to Bennington Plaza would be used to access the property. All parking would be moved to the north and south of the building. Sales inventory vehicles will be located in the parking areas either to the south and east of the building.
The project would have a minimal increase in traffic, according to Olesky's narrative.
"The expansion of the parking areas is simply to be able to provide more inventory options to potential customers," he wrote.
Plans also call for a sidewalk extension along the right-of-way: From the China Wok, where it was eliminated in the Home Depot project, to the south across Bennington Plaza Road, along the dealership's frontage and would end at the Route 279 overpass.
All existing light fixtures would be removed, and replaced with 17 wall mounted and 34 pole mounted downward facing LED light fixtures.
The project must also obtain state stormwater discharge and operational discharge permits.
— Contact Ed Damon at 802-447-7567, ext. 111.