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Popeyes wants a drive-thru

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Popeyes wants to add a drive-thru on their property in Mercerville, which is at the intersection of Winslow Ave and Nottingham Way. Winslow is a smaller artery into a residential area off of the commercial Nottingham Way.

According to the plan, Popeyes calls for exemptions from several township zoning provisions. The drive-thru and addition does not meet Hamilton’s parking space requirements. In addition, Popeyes wants a loading-zone waiver and permission to increase the borders of its parking lot.

I read a couple of articles & web sites on the plan and the opposition. One curious discrepancy I found was in a Trentonian Article from November 23, 2009.

1) The owner states that there will be no increased traffic: “There is no way it will increase traffic” is the exact quote from the owner

2) The owner’s attorney then states the addition and drive-thru will create a “very small amount of additional traffic over and above the traffic that’s already there.”

Which is it? And if the actual answer is 1) then why go through with the plan? My thought is that the reason for doing this would be to increase store traffic….

The attorney then goes on to state that the National Popeyes is requiring the current owner to upgrade (what the attorney refers to as dilapidated) to the 21st century, which includes the addition of the drive-thru.

Additional concerns that have been brought up by the Mercerville Community Association and the Mercerville Merchants Association is the request by the Popeye’s owner to allow Delivery Trucks servicing the store to park their vehicles on Winslow. One other point is that west bound vehicles will no longer be able to make the left turn into Popeyes. Rather it will be necessary for patrons traveling from that direction to travel through the residential neighborhood to enter the property.

Why is this owner willing to alienate his neighbors and customers, go through so much in requesting a multitude of variances and severely impacting the quality of life in this area? In my view, he should either purchase the property immediately adjoining his (or portion of) or relocate to accommodate his business’ needs.

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