2016-04-08 / Front Page

Planners approve brewpub proposal

Nonesuch River Brewing will be located at Eight Corners
By Michael Kelley Staff Writer

A new brewpub has been approved for the Eight Corners section of town, exciting many residents who claim Scarborough lacks culinary diversity.

On Monday, the planning board approved a plan proposed by Tim Boardman, Michael Schuler and Jeff Gambardella, owners of Nonesuch River Brewing Company, to construct a 142- seat restaurant and brewery at 201 Gorham Road. Until recently the property featured a house that was in severe disrepair.

The property sits in a TVC (town and village center) zone that according to the zoning ordinance is designed to “offer a mix of retail, office, service, civic and residential uses,” but is also in close proximity to several homes residentially zoned.

Earlier this year, several abutters came before the planning board to voice their concerns about a restaurant/brewery coming to their neighborhood.

The response Monday was much different. Chuck Bradish said he is excited about a brewpub within walking distance of his Meetinghouse Road home, because due to hectic schedules, he and his family, go out for dinner, often at restaurants outside of Scarborough.

Brewpubs, he said, are a family favorite.

“It’s very relaxing and that is what I am looking for after a long day at work,” Bradish said.

Ridgeway Road resident William Cook is also excited about the project.

“I think we all know the history of the property. It was an eyesore. Something like this will be a great visual entrance into town. (Gorham Road) is one of the main thoroughfares into town,” he said.

Dick Boardman, a founding member of Buy Local Scarborough, has long said Scarborough was in need of a “great restaurant.”

“The Nonesuch River brewpub fits the type of restaurant in mind,” he said.

Not everyone is quite as convinced it is the right fit for the neighborhood. Thaian Vu, who lives at the property next door, told board members Monday that he is still concerned about being able to get in and out of his property once the businesses are up and running. To help ease queuing concerns, the property will have a dedicated left-turn in/ left-turn out lane.

Thomas Simonds, who also lives on that section of Gorham Road, said he was not concerned about the increased traffic volume the restaurant will create.

“I live on Route 114. I knew what I was getting when I bought the house,” he said, adding it was nice to see a locally owned business come to that area of town, which is full of chain restaurants.

Steve Cascio, a resident of Howard Lane, said Boardman, Schuler and Gambardella are “a group of local guys doing it the right way.”

The iteration that was approved this week provided greater buffers in the form of 6-foot high fences and 7- to 8-foot high arborvitae between the restaurant and the residences next door to help block light and sound pollution. The metal roof of the barn-style building will be outfitted with non-glare metal to improve the aesthetics.

Board members was appreciative of the enhanced buffering.

Board chairman Corey Fellows said he was pleased with how the project proposal turned out.

“I think it is going to be a nice addition, especially given what’s been there, but even on its own merits, I think it is going to be well done,” he said.

Planning Board member Susan Auglis supported the project, but thought the 55 parking spaces were not going to be enough. Lee Allen, of Northeast Civil Solutions, the engineering firm working with Nonesuch River Brewing Company on the plans, said the parking meets the ordinance requirement. There had been some talk about using the nearby parking lot at Scarborough Free Baptist Church for valet or employee parking, but church leaders nixed the idea.

“If you make good beer and you make good food, you are going to be successful,” she told the applicant. “I don’t think you have enough parking.”

At Monday’s meeting, the board also approved Maine Seafood Venture’s request to construct a two-bay loading dock at its lobster processing building at 340 Pine Point Road, and an amendment to add heating and cooling units to the roof of the previously approved Martin’s Point facility at 153 Route 1, as well as a preliminary request from Matthew Chamberlain to make two new lots on property at 216 Pine Point Road. The property, located across the street for Ken’s Seafood, includes a multi-family home built in the 1890s.

Staff Writer Michael Kelley can be reached at news@scarboroughleader.com.

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