Landowner Joe Buzzi wanted to build a gas station

 Landowner Joe Buzzi wanted to build a gas station at the Route 5/114/122 intersection six years ago. However, town by-laws wouldn’t allow it. After a long and contentious regulatory battle, the project will now go before the Development Review Board on March 7. Plans submitted by Buzzi call for a 4,500 square-foot mini-mart with 16 parking spaces, a 3,100 square-foot island with eight gas pumps, and a 576 square-foot island with a diesel fuel pump. It would be constructed on a two-acre parcel at 791 Main St., the site of the former Lyn-Burke Motel, which Buzzi tore down in 2021. According to prior reports, the estimated $4 million project has been in the works since Buzzi bought the land in 2018.  Buzzi is bullish on the property’s business potential because of its location, in close proximity to an interstate exit, the town center, and multiple high-profile outdoor recreation venues. It would also border Sanborn Covered Bridge Park, which is currently in development. “That’s an excellent commercial spot. That intersection right there is extremely busy. There’s an average of 12,000 cars a day on that corner.” Buzzi said.  Buzzi has unsuccessfully attempted to re-develop the former motel property for six years. In 2018, after he purchased 791 Main St., Buzzi prepared a permit application for a mini-mart/gas station. However, it did not comply with the town’s stricter Flood Hazard Regulations adopted in 2016. In 2019, in efforts to advance the project, Buzzi launched a campaign to roll back Flood Hazard Regulations to their less restrictive pre-2016 version. His petition received 275 signatures. The revisions included changes to several sections of the floodwater bylaws, including zoning districts, objectives and regulations, flood hazard regulations and administration and enforcement of the rules.