The Zoning Board of Adjustment is still considering an application for an appeal from Flyte Tyme Worldwide Transportation for their use of parking at the Lukoil station on Franklin Turnpike after discussion on the topic at Wednesday night's meeting.
Flyte Tyme has allegedly been using the Lukoil gas station at 149 Franklin Turnpike as a base of operations for seven vehicles, five mini-busses and two vans. This, however, was cited as being in violation of township ordinances forbidding the storage of vehicles on a site.
The applicant’s attorney, Antimo Del Vecchio, argued that since no vehicles were in fact being stored on the property, they were not actually in violation of zoning.
Del Vecchio proceeded to explain that the reasons that a verbal agreement had come about between this particular gas station and Flyte Tyme was a matter of conveniences. This was the only local gas station that offered diesel fuel, which these particular vehicles require.
Additionally, this particular class of vehicles by NJ Department of Transportation ordinance must be inspected daily. And if issues were found, they could be serviced at this particular service station.
Del Vecchio argued that the zoning issue was nothing more than a misunderstanding. As the vehicles were inspected at the station every morning, they were not being stored, but were in fact present awaiting service in the morning.
“Sam” Ellahi, owner of this Lukoil station, was the first witness. He has been the owner of this franchise since July 2010, and also owns two other locations. He corroborated Del Vecchio’s claims, and also mentioned that prior to the current issue, had not been cited with any zoning violations.
Ellahi testified that they inspect the vehicles for free every morning, but perform service and fuel the vehicles for payment. He maintained that the vehicles normally are off the lot and in service most of the day.
Board member George Cimis, however, presented photos he claimed were from 2:30 p.m. on the same day, showing a couple of Flyte Tyme’s vehicles still at the service station. He also expressed concerns about a grassy area adjacent to the lot, and the possibility of its being used for parking.
Tim Rose, owner of Flyte Tyme, agreed with all that had been stated to that point, and conceded that those were his vehicles, but they may have been there following service or even refueling.
Local neighbors wished to speak about concerns with this situation, but as other residential items on the docket had to be addressed, Board Chairman Rabolli called for an adjournment of the matter. He suggested, in the meantime, the local neighbors and the site owner discuss their issues, and come to some sort of agreement before the next time they meet.
Due to scheduling conflicts, the Flyte Tyme matter will be carried to September 21 and October 5, before the board votes on the matter.