MILFORD — The vacant lot across the street from the newly renovated Pine Valley Mill Lofts might have new neighbors, but the Planning Board is not sure it’s the right type of neighbors for the close-by heavily residential neighborhood at 37 Wilton Road.
The Dollar General proposal was before the Milford Planning Board for a conceptual hearing with no binding decisions.
The building plans calls for a 9,100 square foot retail store with a flat roof. The board cited concerns with the design, because flat roofs are not allowed in the West Elm Corridor because of a town ordinance. The lot is in the Integrated-Commercial-Industrial District, very close to residences in Milford and Wilton.
When asked if the roof can be changed, Justin Turner for Bohler Engineering said, “Their buildings are standard and typically don’t change the configuration by adding geometry to the roof.” He left with the meeting with the intentions to inquire about the roof design.
The West Elm Street Corridor strongly recommends parking in the back and Bohler did adjust parking to accommodate this by placing 23 of the 32 parking spaces in the rear of the building. They plan to add screening on the side that faces a residential abutter.
Chairperson Janet Langdell said, “In this particular location in this particular context, you are entering into a residential zone that is heavily residential and there is a look and feel as you are entering into downtown Wilton. Those are things we need to keep in mind. Across the street is a large beautiful brick structure and you are incorporating some brick to keep somewhat of a theme going.”
Across the street from the proposed site is the Pine Valley Mill Lofts, which recently renovated a historic 150-year-old mill into 50 income-based apartments. The project won a Preservation Award from the New Hampshire Preservation Alliance last month.
Regarding traffic impact, Dollar General considers the number of average transactions per hour to be relatively low — about 10 — with the store expected to be open seven days a week.