Starbucks, Self-Storage Facility Eyed For Frank’s Hardware, Sunny’s Site

An artist’s rendering of what the securespace self-storage facility planned for a site on Route 27 could look like.

Chick-fil-A is out, but a second Starbucks and a self-storage business are still in a developer’s proposal for a Route 27 site.

The lot at Rt. 27 and Kevin Apuzzio Avenue that now holds Frank’s Building Supply and Sunny’s diner is eyed by developer Paul Brown. Brown appeared before the Planning Board at its July 17 meeting to review his vision for the site and talk about ordinance changes that would have to be made for the development to happen.

Property included in the project falls within the Renaissance Commercial Zone, and the entire property would have to be absorbed into the Renaissance redevelopment area. For that to happen, township planner Mark Healey told the board, certain modifications would have to be made to the redevelopment zone and commercial zone ordinances.

The modifications to the redevelopment zone ordinance will be presented to the Township Council at its August meeting and, if introduced, would then be sent back to the Planning Board for its approval.

Earlier in the year, the project also included a Chick-fil-A restaurant. That did not materialize, so the project Brown described to the board included only the Starbucks and the “securespace” self-storage facility.

Brown, who said he has been building self-storage facilities across the country for the past 10 years, said he would design a building that fit in with the surrounding area.

The rendering he showed the board was of a four-story brick building that looked more like an apartment building than a self-storage facility.

The Starbucks would feature a drive-through window.

“We found this site and thought it would be great for self-storage,” he said. “I liked the proximity to Rutgers University. We then proceeded to design some conceptual ideas for self-storage.”

“I believe architecture should blend in with the community, I think it should look like it belongs,” Brown said. “I don’t think you should pollute your community with big red and orange boxes.”

” We want to make sure that you guys are happy with what we build and that the town stays happy,” he said.

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