Avon Commission approves addition to Nod Brook Mall
Former restaurant to be demolished; HomeGoods store planned in new space, according to developer
By Paul Palmer
AVON – The Avon Planning and Zoning Commission has given approval to a plan to demolish a former restaurant in the Nod Brook Mall on Route 44 and build a new HomeGoods Store in its place. At its June 14th meeting, Nod Brook Investors LLC presented a request for a site plan approval at the 315 West Main St. address. It calls for the construction of a 23,500 square foot building addition where an empty building now sits.
Lee Zekeria, the owner of Paramount Realty, told the Commission that he and his brother had purchased the property, which includes a Michael’s, a Marshalls, and a Fresh Market among other stores. The proposal would increase the 102,000 square feet of space by demolishing the existing 7,540 square foot restaurant space on the east end of the site and adding the new building.
The plans also call for changes to the fronts of the other stores that run alongside the proposed new store. Zoning Commission member Mary Harrop asked Zekeria if this new location would replace the existing HomeGoods located just 1.1 miles away on Bushy Hill Road in Simsbury. While Zekeria said that it would, an official from HomeGoods headquarters had a different answer when contacted by The Valley Press. In a written statement, Marketing Supervisor Samantha Abbatessa said, ‘Although we appreciate your inquiry, HomeGoods has not announced any store changes in Simsbury, CT at this time.’
Some Commission members raised the issue of constructing and connecting sidewalks in the mall. Engineer Paul Vitaliano who is working on the project noted that the sidewalk would lead to nowhere and on the east side there is a grade issue. State DOT approval would be needed as the sidewalk would potentially be tied into the traffic signal and crosswalks making it very complicated as well as derailing the timeline for the project. Commissioners Lisa Levin and Robin Baran both pressed Vitialiano on the issue and he said that ‘the applicant is open/willing to having a discussion regarding sidewalks in the future should development be proposed on the subject site or on an adjacent site.’
The Commission approved the proposal with certain conditions regarding parking spaces, water runoff, approval by the Fire Commissioner and having a meeting at least 2 weeks prior to the start of any construction. There will be no public hearing on the project as it is deemed site plan review because it is already zoned for this use and the only thing being changed is the building itself.
HomeGoods is part of the TJX Companies, an off-price apparel and home fashions retailer in the U.S. and worldwide. According to its website, the company has nearly 47-hundred stores operating worldwide under the names of T.J. Maxx and Marshalls, HomeGoods, Sierra, and Homesense.