Construction of a Shell station at the Martha’s Vineyard Airport Business Park is underway. One of three fiberglass fuel tanks was lowered by a crane into a deep hole Thursday afternoon. Onsite to observe the work, Depot Corner owner Lou Paciello told The Times that while pleased with the progress of the construction, he was unenthused by an unanticipated loss of floor space to a planned convenience store inside the station. Looking out to a newly poured foundation, Paciello said, “I’m going to have two-thirds of a building I can’t use.”
The convenience store portion of the project has run afoul of an Edgartown zoning bylaw prohibiting retail sales area from exceeding 10 percent of the overall floor area, a law that further stipulates that the retail area can’t exceed 500 square feet.
Approved by the Martha’s Vineyard Commission on Jan. 25, the Edgartown planning board took issue with the project a little over a month later.
In a March 6 memo to building inspector Lenny Jason, planning board chairman James Cisek wrote, “The application calls for a convenience store ‘proposed to be 2275 square feet.’”
Cisek cited the bylaw prohibiting a store of that size, and asked Jason to request a modified proposal from the applicant.
From his office in Edgartown Town Hall, Jason told The Times Paciello will be required to reduce the floor space of his convenience store to the legal limit and designate the remaining floor space as storage. Barring that, he must seek a special permit from the planning board, he said.
Paciello said he doesn’t intend to move forward with a special permit application at this time.
“We thought we asked all the right questions, but apparently we didn’t,” he said.