P&Z Watch: Shake Shack Submits Pre-Application for Restaurant on East Putnam Ave

Good news for fans of Shake Shack’s burgers, fries and milkshakes.

Shake Shack has a pending application to the Planning & Zoning Commission for a 3,094-square foot restaurant at 1205 East Putnam Ave, which is next to McDonald’s by Exit 5.

The Shake Shack proposal notes that property is a through lot between East Putnam Avenue and Neil Lane and has existing curb cuts on both sides.

They propose dining capacity for 53 people – both standing and seated customers. The proposal would include outdoor dining for more than three tables.

The narrative notes that the site layout has been designed to have all ingress and egress come from East Putnam Avenue to limit the impact to surrounding properties. Screening plantings would be installed on the North, West, and East property boundaries.

The property is located in the Local Business (LB) zone where restaurants are permitted as a Use Group 1 use. The proposed building would comply with the zoning criteria for the LB zone, including story, building height, FAR, building coverage, lot coverage, and setback.

The property is now improved with a two-family house with a detached garage.

The house may look familiar because of a previous proposal there for a 20-unit residential building filed under 6-110 for workforce housing. That application advanced to final, but the project was not pursued.

At the time both ARC and P&Z both balked at the bulkiness of the apartment building. Because it was submitted under 6-110, for workforce housing, there was an incentive that allowed for ‘up to .9 FAR.’

In addition to concerns about drainage, and traffic onto Neil Lane, neighbors noted the intersection was already congested. One neighbor described it as the busiest intersection in town and said there were numerous crashes there.

One of the iterations of a proposed apartment building previously proposed for 1205 East Putnam Ave in 2019.