A proposed commercial development near the intersection of state routes 146 and 9 could bring Halfmoon upstate New York's first Chick-Fil-A restaurant, as well as a new Fresh Market.
The "Lawrence Circle Commercial Development" has its first review by the town Planning Board tonight at 7 p.m. at Halfmoon Town Hall, but it is still several months away from possible approval.
"The applicant has requested feedback on the concept plan from the Planning Board before they pursue any necessary variances from the [Zoning Board of Appeals]," said town Director of Planning Richard Harris.
Documents filed with the town Planning Department show five buildings being built on a 10.3-acre site zoned for commercial use at the corner of Route 146/Old Route 146/Lawrence Drive. The total square footage would be just over 60,000 square feet.
Among the proposed uses is a 4,200 square foot Chick-Fil-A fast food restaurant.
The chicken sandwich chain, based in Atlanta, has more than 2,000 locations in 43 states nationwide, but none of its franchises are in upstate New York, according to the company website. The nearest restaurants are in Chicopee, Massachusetts, and Enfield, Connecticut. There are three locations in Manhattan and one in Queens, and they are the only New York state locations.
The company is known for its chicken breast filet sandwiches and for a popular advertising sign in which cows hold up comically misspelled signs suggesting "Eat Mor Chikin."
It is also known for the strong stance its CEO took in 2012 against same-sex marriage, and the money its charitable foundation was donating to organizations seen as hostile to LGBT rights.
[Just a blip in same-sex marriage debate]
A company spokesman on Tuesday confirmed interest in the Capital Region, but not the specifics. "While we hope to serve communities in the Albany area in the future, we do not currently have any locations to confirm," said spokesman Rob Entsinger.
The proposed Chick-Fil-A would encompass 4,200 square feet and include a drive-through window.
Also listed in the application are a 6,050-square-foot unidentified restaurant and a 21,000-square-foot The Fresh Market grocery store.
The Fresh Market, based in North Carolina, has 176 stores in 23 states, building smaller stores than supermarket chains and saying it emphasizes fresh products and a "European market" atmosphere.
In the Capital Region, there are Fresh Market locations in Latham and Saratoga Springs.
The Lawrence Circle development also proposes a 24,000 square foot retail building and a 5,000 square foot office building.
The site is just off a busy intersection near the Halfmoon-Clifton Park town line and Northway Exit 9, where surrounding properties are already commercially developed.
As part of the application, Harris said the applicant wants to consolidate nine existing lots as well as part of the Lawrence Circle right-of-way into a single lot. Extinguishing the right-of-way would require Town Board approval.
If the project goes forward, it would require site plan approval and a special use permit from the Planning Board. As the project is designed, Harris said at least one zoning variance would also be needed.
Reach Gazette reporter Stephen Williams at 395-3086, firstname.lastname@example.org or @gazettesteve on Twitter.