Franklin Turnpike will not be getting a new hand car wash. The township’s planning board denied an application this week that would have seen a new company, ABH, LLC, building a hand car wash and detail center at 40 Franklin Turnpike.
After board concerns during a previous meeting prompted the company to revise its plans, it returned to the planning board Monday night with a plan that laid out a traffic pattern for cars to get in about out of the site for both washes and details, and a water flow system that ensured that water and oil flowing off of washed cars could be properly separated and disposed of.
However, the board still raised questions about whether or not cars would have enough space to get in and out, or if the business would lead to car stacking on Franklin Turnpike.
Mayor Bill Laforet cited a previous approval at the site that allowed a business owner to conduct a detail shop only at that site, not a car wash.
“My concern now is what the concern was in 2004,” he said. “If it wasn’t approved for a car wash then, what’s changed?” he asked the applicant.
The board also said the township had an issue with the previous business running a car wash at the spot without having approval to do so, and that it wanted to avoid a similar situation now.
After some debate amongst board members bout whether or not the business would be feasible at that location, ABH revealed its plan to have six employees, not two as previously thought. The change upped the parking spot requirement on the site from 10 to 14.
The plan for the business called for only eight spots, and ABH representatives said 10 could fit on the site, no more.
The application was denied based on its inability to meet the parking requirements.
Though township officials said the company could apply to the Board of Adjustment to receive a variance for the parking requirement, a few members said they didn’t think that would be enough to make the car wash work.
Te last owner had, “such a negative situation at that site,” township council liaison Chuck Jandris said. “I don’t think a [car wash] belongs there.”