Storage units coming to west Milford

>Complex planned for lot across from Pine Valley Mill

MILFORD – The Plan­ning Board last week approved a large self-storage complex across from the Pine Valley Mill apartments, de­spite pleas from an abut­ter that the plan would "bring ugliness to the back side of Milford."

Karen Legault, of Maple Street, told the board the units would be an eyesore and devalue neighboring properties.

"We are losing the op­portunity to find a good fit for the neighborhood," she said.

The use of the property for self-storage had pre­viously been approved by the Zoning Board of Adjustment, and the Plan­ning Board’s role was to examine the site plan to make sure it conforms to zoning regulations.

Board members said self-storage would be a low-use development compared to other possi­bilities for the lot, which is in the town’s Integrated Industrial-Commercial zone.

Two years ago, a large Dollar General store was proposed there, but the plan never materialized.

Vice Chairman Janet Langdell said the appli­cant, Matthew Ciardelli and MAC Milford Reality, LCC, has a "very strong track record" for nice, neat developments.

If a proposal satisfies zoning regulations a plan­ning board can’t disallow it, said Paul Amato.

Even if there was no perceived demand for the product or service – for example, if the board thought there are too many pizza shops, or too many drug stores in the area – they can’t say no to a proposal for that rea­son.

And "the demand for storage is absolutely co­lossal," board member Susan Robinson told Le­gault.

The buildings will be in the eastern portion of the lot, and Chad Branon, of Fieldstone Land Consul­tants, laid out in detail the plans for the 35,400 square foot complex in seven-buildings at 30 Wil­ton Road. The plans meet the requirements of the state’s Shoreline Water Quality Protection law, he said.

The landowner wants to donate nearby 17.5 acres of riverside land to the town of Milford, and Legault warned that there could be pollutants from a transformer con­taminating the property.

Board members said selectmen will have the land inspected before ac­cepting it.