BURLINGTON – The Bagel Bar recently earned unanimous approval from the Planning Board to occupy space at 282 Cambridge St.
The site is located in the Cambridge Street plaza that hosts Olde Towne Liquors and Town Grocery.
The Bagel Bar, LLC, was the formal applicant in front of the planners seeking a special permit approval. The company’s concept entails serving fresh (off-site) baked bagels and locally roasted coffee, in an effort to satisfy the strong demand for such needs in that area of town, near the Billerica line. Representatives confirmed to the planners they will be using an “established” and “well-known” baker for the bagels, who will ship fresh bagels to the property every day.
“Our goal is to serve fresh, toasted bagels and bagel sandwiches for breakfast and lunch as well as provide a wide variety of Gluten Free options,” said Michael Toulopoulos, property owner of the plaza and The Bagel Bar. “We will provide fresh ground coffee and espresso drinks [both hot and iced] from a local roaster.”
The business will run primarily during off-peak hours, which is compatible with the plaza’s typically busy business hours of 4-8 p.m. The hours of operation will 6 a.m.-3 p.m. Sunday through Saturday. At most, there will be three employees on the site at any time.
As part of the special permit, the business will only need a commercial toaster oven and high-speed vent-less convection oven/microwave combination for its heating/toasting purposes.
There will be up to 12 seats, including four stools at counter-top height and eight seats between banquette/bench and chairs. However, the ideal business model for the bagel shop is take-out.
Parking was the only minor concern, but the plan details the ample parking that exists to support the requested seating for the 1,000 square-foot space.
Planning Director Kristin Kassner expressed “minimal concern” regarding the use, with no on-site baking and a parking ratio that is on-par with the bylaws.
Several planners raised the point of asking the Toulopoulos family, owners of the plaza, to update the strip so it is at the expected level of the new Town Center Overlay District, which revolves around more pedestrian connectivity and green space in the downtown area and less impervious surface. The Toulopoulos family tentatively agreed to meet with town officials and setup a 5-year plan to reach those goals.
Besides that, the board was firmly in favor of the The Bagel Bar.
“In general, we are excited to have this part of town have some new businesses,” remarked Planning Board Chair Barbara L’Heureux.
The board unanimously approved the special permit.