Branford Inland Wetlands Reviews Amazon’s ‘Last Mile’ Installation Request

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By Pam Johnson / Zip06.com • 11/18/2021 4:03 PM EST

The Branford Inland Wetlands Commission (IWC) continues its review of a site application for inland, wetlands and waterways for a ‘last mile e-commerce delivery station’ project. From Amazon on previously developed and currently vacant land on Commercial Parkway. Commercial Parkway is accessible via West Main Street / Route 1 and is located near I-95, Exit 53.

As previously reported in September, Amazon officials met with First Selectman Jamie Cosgrove and city staff to share a preliminary plan, followed by the company’s request to present its preliminary proposal to the Economic Development Commission (EDC ) from Branford, this discussion taking place at an EDC. meeting that month. Cosgrove said the review of the plan answered questions and provided information that gave him, and staff and members of the EDC, confidence in the concept plan presented by Amazon.

On October 8, the applicant FSI Acquisitions LLC (Milford) and the owners 49 Commercial Parkway LLC and Hamliton Branford LLC (Clinton) submitted the IWC application as the first step in the process of obtaining approval to construct the facility. here. CBI members received the request and heard a preliminary outline at its October 14 meeting; planned and completed a site visit to the property on November 3; and heard the formal presentation of the plans by the requesting team at its November 4 meeting.

The IWC discussion on November 4 will continue at the next IWC meeting on December 9, when certain modifications will be made by the applicant regarding stormwater management, based on the issues raised by the commission. These revised documents were received on November 17 for the IWC to review on December 9, said Jaymie Frederick, Inland Wetlands Officer for the City of Branford. The agenda for the December 9 IWC meeting has not yet been finalized; but will be posted within the required time frame prior to the December 9 meeting. Agendas, meetings and application materials are available online at www.branford.ct-gov

Located at 49 and 81-111 Commercial Parkway, the entire property for the proposed development is approximately 21.5 acres. Before the property was stripped of its old buildings, the site housed a Sero Shirt Company warehouse and retail outlet, spread over two buildings totaling approximately 179,545 square feet. The proposed development would construct a 98,205 square foot warehouse and distribution facility.

As described to the IWC in the project description of the application, in addition to the construction of the warehouse and distribution facility, the site would be developed to include a total of 213 passenger car stands, 9 ADA compatible stands (Americans with Disabilities Act), 542 delivery van fleet booths, 50 delivery van queue booths, 50 van loading booths and 9 truck loading spaces.

While there are no wetlands on the property and there is no planned or proposed work in the regulated wetlands, there is approximately 36,294 square feet of proposed activity in the regulated areas. 100 feet on and adjacent to the property. There are approximately 1.27 acres of 100 foot restricted areas on the property. In addition, there is approximately 1.18 acres of area occupied by slopes exceeding 25 percent level.

According to information submitted to the IWC for review, the site would not experience an increase in peak stormwater flow or volume due to the new development, and would have a reduction in impervious surfaces compared to existing conditions in due to the establishment of islands, plantation areas and buffer zones. between the property and the wetland. The impervious surface would be reduced from a current impervious area of ​​755,021 square feet to the proposed 731,948 square feet; a reduction of 23,073 square feet.

Frederick said that to date no input from the public has been received on the IWC app as correspondence, in meetings or as contacts via published Zoom links provided with each meeting agenda. . At this time, the commission has not determined that a public hearing is required, in accordance with state laws.

If the request is approved by the IWC, the next step would be to submit a site plan request to the Planning and Zoning Commission (PZC) for review. Several issues that do not arise in an IWC exam, such as a traffic survey, would be considered during the PZC exam. The PZC would hold a public hearing as part of its consideration of the request.

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