Downsized Shelton Plaza passes P&Z, with fewer gas pumps

Photo of Brian Gioiele
Developers have scaled back the proposed plaza at 265 Bridgeport Ave. in Shelton. This rendering shows five pump islands, but the final Planning and Zoning Commission resolution calls for only four, but they could be extended to allow for more pumps.

Developers have scaled back the proposed plaza at 265 Bridgeport Ave. in Shelton. This rendering shows five pump islands, but the final Planning and Zoning Commission resolution calls for only four, but they could be extended to allow for more pumps.

Contributed rendering

SHELTON — Developers received a green light on their proposed Bridgeport Avenue convenience store and gas pump islands — but the final designs will be different than they originally sought. 

The Planning and Zoning Commission, at its meeting Wednesday, approved Shelton Plaza Realty, LLC.’s application for the Planned Development District at 265 Bridgeport Ave. — on the corner of Bridgeport Avenue and Cots Street, where a vacant office building now stands. 

The approval allows for development of a 4,000-square-foot convenience store and retail gas sales, which would be located on pump islands. 

The developer had sought five pump islands, 10 pumps in all. Commissioners had voiced concern about the number of islands, and in the final resolution, voted to reduce that number to four, but agreed that altering some designs could lead to additional pumps. 

“(The commission) will allow the lengthening of one or more islands to provide stacked pump stations and thereby maintain service capacity,” the resolution states. “The pump canopy structure needs to be redesigned and provided with a roof treatment that reflects the retail store building.” 

Commissioners had also voiced concern about the visual impact of the gas pump islands along Bridgeport Avenue. 

“With a mandated reduction in the number of pump islands from five to four, reducing the canopy length, it appears to become feasible to consider alternative site layouts, such as rotating the layout 90 degrees, placing the canopy parallel to Cots Street and moving the retail store building to the north of the pump islands," the resolution states.

The commission concluded those changes would result in "better exposure of the store building to Bridgeport Avenue."

With the reduction in pump islands, zoning consultant Tony Panico said the developer can accept the commission’s recommended design changes or work with staff on changes that would better suit the site. 

Panico said either way, the developers must return to the commission for final approval before beginning construction. 

This is the latest twist in a plan developers started pushing last year. 

Shelton Plaza Realty, LLC, in September was denied by the commission in its efforts to construct an 8,000-square-foot, two-story building with a convenience store on the first level and office space on the second, with gasoline pumps at the front of the site at 265 Bridgeport Ave.   

The developer then submitted new plans in October, seeking to make the site a Planned Development District with a 4,060-square-foot retail and office building and a service station, a move which kept the convenience store and gas pumps but removed the second-floor offices.   

After listening to commission concerns, developers again altered their PDD request, calling for a 4,000-square-foot convenience store and removing the office space option altogether, with five, two-sided gasoline pumps.  

The newly reduced building allows for an improved traffic flow throughout the site, which will have two curb cuts, one on Cots Street, the other Bridgeport Avenue, according to the presentation. When exiting the Bridgeport Avenue curb cut, there would be no left turn.   

The adjacent properties are commercial and medical offices with residential farther west on Cots Street. The parcel, located between Constitution Boulevard and Exit 13 of Route 8, also abuts the area where the extension of Constitution Boulevard is proposed to occur.   

brian.gioiele@hearstmediact.com