Developer Mark J. Zlocki received the green light Tuesday to bring a Dunkin’ Donuts to historic Oley Township.
The zoning hearing board voted 3-0 to approve all sign and parking variances and a special exception for a drive-thru. The doughnut shop will replace the Oley Legion Diner along Route 73 and will be the township’s first drive-thru.
“The reason we went along with granting these variances was because we feel you will be an asset to the community,” zoning board Chairman James R. Coker told Zlocki. “If we didn’t, they wouldn’t have been granted.”
Zlocki, of Arod Entities, Douglassville, hopes to open in 60 to 90 days.
The ruling was the end of a yearlong process that kept Zlocki going back and forth between the township supervisors and Dunkin’ Brands.
“I kind of went in with mixed emotions,” Zlocki said. “I’m ecstatic that they agreed to everything we asked for, but you never know. They could have taken a hard line position on all those items.”
The final design looks much different from a typical Dunkin’ Donuts and will have the absolute minimum signage.
The building will look much like the old diner, but the inside will be gutted and outfitted with new equipment and wiring. Zlocki plans to redo the roof.
“We promise to be good business neighbors and we want to be a part of the community,” Zlocki said. “We’re very excited and are going to get moving very quickly.”
While it’s too early to start advertising jobs, Zlocki said he is hoping to hire from within the community.
The plan also calls for improvements to Route 73, including the addition of a left-turn lane into the property.
While the plan has cleared most hurdles, Zlocki still needs to finalize some building permits and finish paperwork with PennDOT. Residents who were identified as parties to the zoning hearing can also file appeals within a 30-day window.
Karla Hummel is one of those residents and said Tuesday that the doughnut shop is literally in her backyard.
Hummel said she didn’t want extra noise, light or trash from the Dunkin’ Donuts, but said Zlocki’s plans tackled all those concerns.
“You can’t ask for much more,” she said. “I don’t drink coffee and I don’t really eat doughnuts, but I think it’ll look nicer.”
Article by Reading Eagle Company
Direct +1 610 370 8502
Main +1 610 779 1400
Fax +1 610 779 1985