BENNINGTON — The local Subaru dealership has gotten the town's permission to expand.
Bennington Subaru sought approval to replace its existing dealership building and service center with a new, larger facility and to make other site improvements.
The Development Review Board held a second public hearing on the application on Tuesday. Following a brief discussion with an engineer, members entered into deliberative session. DRB members ultimately approved the development and design plans, according to Planning Director Dan Monks.
The tentative time line is to begin work on the new building's foundation this fall, Jeff Olesky, with Wilson Consulting Engineers of Cabot, said during Tuesday's meeting. The building construction would continue over the winter and the dealer would continue use of the existing building. Site work and demolition of the existing building would take place next summer.
The project still must receive storm water and discharge permits from the state.
The DRB first heard the proposal from C.J.T. LLC, the entity that owns the 6-acre property, last month. Bennington Subaru is a trade name owned by Bennington Auto Mart LLC. The project calls for replacing the existing 12,385-square-foot building at 527 North Bennington Road with a new, 14,400-square-foot dealership and service center. The new structure will be built just north of the existing one.
A reconstructed parking area will be built south of the new building, and new parking areas will 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.
Plans also call for a sidewalk extension along the North Bennington Road 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 ending at the Route 279 overpass.
Olesky said engineers are working with the state Agency of Transportation on the proposed alignment of the sidewalk and a crosswalk.
Contact Ed Damon at 802-447-7567, ext. 111.