A new residential development is being planned in the current Days Inn site, creating 6,000 square feet of retail and approximately 143 residential units.

The current site includes the Days Inn and Key Bank, and previously included Chucks Margaritaville. Key Bank has had plans to close the location.

The project, on a site of 6.5 acres, is being purchased and developed by Bob Smith and MetroStar, a company known for high end residential apartments and amenities. MetroStar previously applied for a development at Atlantic Wharf, which was approved, but is held up in a legal battle between private parties.

It is of note that the current structure at 356 Main, where a Chinese take out restaurant, a florist and other small businesses, will remain in place.

All of the retail would be along route 1, and the residential units would be studio, one and two bedroom units.

Due to some wetlands impacts, approval from Inland wetlands would be needed. According to Smith, the site is clean, and there are no environmental issues.

Smith described the design as “a Connecticut coastal interpretation of a Georgian type architecture.” The design is similar to a design recently completed in a medial office park on route 1 in Guilford.

The plan is to have an open green area in the center with a clubhouse with a lounge and business center, and a “significant size gym” along with a golf simulator, yoga, and more.

For Smiths developments, there is often a focus on amenities, something highly sought after by professional renters.

The hearing was preliminary, and generally done to garner the initial reaction by the Planning and Zoning Commission. Overall, the members present were extremely favorable, recognizing the need, the location near an exit, and the improvement of a sight in need of an upgrade.

Smith did not give an exact timeline for a formal application.

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(11) comments

Guest

Since the Atlantic Wire units are full this will be a great place for the rest of the professionals to go.......oh wait!

Guest

Generally, Bob Smith does a nice job of providing small, expensive, attractive apartments. Often by the shear power of his will. He took on Atlantic Wire despite warnings from professionals with insight into the underlying site issues. Because, he always acts as though he is the smartest person in the room. Not always the case, but often it is.....

Guest

when it comes to multi-tenant residential construction, Smith is probably the smartest guy in the room. He developed downtown Milford when others said it couldn't be done. All his buildings are immaculate and well kept! Any community should be extatic to have metro star develop in their area, bring up tax revenue and property value!

Guest

Just what we need. More housing units constructed on a small site. Will this ever end? Is there anyone in town government who can stop this type of development?

Guest

Ugh this is a terrible idea. 143 units on 6.5 acres?! I live walking distance from this area. How do residents speak out against this?

Guest

I live in the area as well and I would like to know how something like this effects our property values? I agree that something needs to be done with that area, but the last thing we need is more apartments. I plan to speak out against this and I hope the Town of Branford chooses to go in a different direction.

gobballfan

The last thing we need in Branford are more living units. Especially at what I'm sure will be a price point no one is going to want to pay to live on Rt 1. This will have a negative affect on house property values as there will be more supply than demand, which will then lead to higher taxes and then even less of a desire to move to Branford. Look at towns with low taxes, Shelton, Oxford, Darien. People want to live there and the property values continue to rise, they have excellent services and facilities and taxes stay low. It's a vicious cycle, but adding living units is not the way to control expenses and maintain or god forbid, lower the mill rate. If we don't get a more viable commercial base in Branford, a 30 mill rate is coming next year and 35 will not be far behind.

Guest

Shelton and Oxford have a broad range of housing and apartment types, with more under development. Every housing unit requires appliances and services which provide jobs. What you oppose are apartments and renters, who you may feel are not up to whom you would like as your neighbor. Try a different argument.

gobballfan

No, I oppose flooding the market with 100+ high end units with no known need for them, Those units aren't being furnished with appliances bought in Branford, and Smith is based out of Milford, so I'm sure most of the workers are not from Branford. I love Branford, but like it or not, Branford is not a destination place to live. Empty store fronts are becoming the norm, taxes continue to creep up every year, the school system is less than stellar with a do nothing superintendent, and just drive around town and you will find plenty of for sale signs. Adding 100+ for sale signs is helping no one but the developer. Branford needs to do everything it can to build it's commercial/corporate tax base.

Guest

I am personally not a big fan of Smith. He stated in Milford when he got them to change an Affordable Zone to Market Rate that, "He doesn't build Oldsmobiles, but he builds Cadillacs" or something to that effect. HOWEVER, his projects almost always rent out. So who am I to criticize....? I don't think it will have an adverse impact on the Branford Tax base. In Milford, the tax rates have gone down the past three years. Retailers have gone there, as opposed to Orange or Stratford, due to their diverse population. These are the people with disposable income that fill the shops on RT 1. At least that has been the case in Milford.

Guest

Have No fear, the eunuchs on the P&Z will protect us. LOL.

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