Andy’s Center Shops to get a facelift
By John Fitts
SIMSBURY – The owners of Andy’s Center Shops recently received approval for a plan to revitalize the plaza in the hopes of attracting new tenants, including a drive-through restaurant and a mix of retail and office space in the former grocery store, which closed in 2012.
The modified site plan application approved Oct. 5 by the Simsbury Zoning Commission includes a new 300-square foot addition to the 76,731 square foot facility.
“What we’re looking to do is to add a small addition to the restaurant, which would be used as a drive though,” Chris Milliard of Phase Zero Design told the commission on behalf of the owner.
A common corridor area would provide access to office and retail spaces, access to the trash areas, as well as a means of egress.
Milliard reviewed some other aspects of the project, which would include a new black-and-white-themed façade, with elements such painted brick, vinyl siding and trim, new fabric awnings, metal swing gates for the loading and trash area vinyl vented soffit panels, fabric awnings, and a new barnwood cladding on a retaining wall in the rear of the plaza and new exterior, goose neck, dark-sky-compliant lighting.
Also included are changes that would enhance vehicular and pedestrian movements.
The plan calls for 149 parking spaces, an addition of 5 and 12.37 percent open space, a slight increase from current conditions. There would be no change to the 3.57-acre lot size.
“It’s not a lot of big change, but it should help really change the character of the plaza as a whole,” said Terri-Ann P. Hahn, principal of Simsbury Landscape Architectural Design Associates, which also worked on the project at 836 Hopmeadow St.
Owner Loren ‘Andy’ Andreo Jr. said the goal is to make the improvements as soon as possible. He acknowledged it’s been a struggle to get a consistent tenant for the former grocery store, but feels the new plan will increase marketing potential.
“We feel that a drive-through component in the center of Simsbury would entice somebody to come here,” he said.