Cheshire Residents Petition Against Dollar General Plans

By Jack GuerinoiBerkshires Staff
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The Board of Selectmen have passed on a query on property lines from Dollar General to town counsel.

CHESHIRE, Mass. — The Selectmen have received a letter from a lawyers representing Dollar General asking to resolve property borders on the proposed building area.

The letter stated that the surveyor could not determine the northern property line that goes along West Mountain Road and asks what actions need to be taken to get the item on the warrant for a special or an annual town meeting so a parameter can be established.

Chairwoman Carol Francesconi at Tuesday's Selectmen's meeting said the board does not know exactly what the letter means in terms of the construction of the unwanted Dollar General. She said the board will give the letter to town counsel so he can open up dialogue with Dollar general representatives.

A number of Cheshire citizens have been compiling a petition aimed to show their concern about traffic safety of the proposed design of the Dollar General parking lot. The discount/retail chain is seeking to demolish a dilapidated but historic home at the corner of South Street and West Mountain Road, with the driveway access off West Mountain.

Resident Eileen Tremblay said she received preliminary plans for the Dollar General and explained the design shows a three-lane exit and entrance to the store near the edge of the intersection.

"The road is just too narrow and that intersection is too dangerous," Tremblay said. "I can't imagine big 18-wheelers pulling in there and the fire department is right across the street; it is just seem too dangerous."

She said the plan is to send the petition to the state Department of Transportation so it can be taken into account when the traffic survey is conducted.

"We aren't as concerned about the Dollar General as much as we are about safety," she said.

With more than 300 signatures,Tremblay suspects they will be heard.

"In a week, we got 350 signatures, and we plan to get many more," she said. "The town is behind this and the selectmen signed it.”

The board, however, told others opposing the store that they could not place signs on public property.

An unknown person has been placing signs protesting the Dollar General throughout Cheshire.

"I don't know who put them up, but they are all here in Town Hall," Francesconi said. "They can be put on private property, but they can't be put on public property, and … if the highway department sees any on town property they are to be removed."

Francesconi suspects the person or persons placing the signs have been acting at night

"I have no idea who is doing it; all of the sudden they appear, like a ghost came in and plopped them down," she said.

Tags: citizens petition,   demolition,   dollar store,   traffic,   

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