WEST WINDSOR: Wegman’s gets go-ahead for expansion in Nassau Park

An addition to Wegman’s in Nassau Park won’t really be visible until shoppers enter the food market.

By Jennifer Kohlhepp, Staff Writer
   WEST WINDSOR — An addition to Wegman’s in Nassau Park won’t really be visible until shoppers enter the food market.
   The 10,800-square-foot addition will be to the left of the food market in between Wegman’s and the store next to it. The addition will be behind an existing screen and won’t be visible, except from far out in the parking lot, according to Daniel Aken of Wegman’s Food Market.
   ”It’s really an expansion of existing departments,” Mr. Aken said.
   The addition would provide for a reorganization of current products.
   ”There’s a crunch on space for the amount of products we have,” Mr. Aken said. “We have a license to sell wine in the store. We have 6-7,000 square feet for wine and less room for other products.”
   There has been talk of moving all the wine into the addition but a final decision on how the space would be used has not been made yet, according to Mr. Aken.
   ”There will be a small reorganization of our current products,” Mr. Aken said, adding that the food market does not plan to expand its market café nor to open a pub like Wegman’s in Pennsylvania.
   The company does not expect the expansion of the store to add new customers.
   ”We don’t anticipate any additional customers,” Mr. Aken said. “The addition is being offered for our customers there. There will be no increase in traffic or the number of trucks. It’s from a Wegman’s products standpoint. We have ample staff.”
   The architecture and materials for the addition will complement that of the existing supermarket.
   Wegman’s representatives had to appear before the Zoning Board to seek variances for the addition — a use variance approval for floor area ratio, a bulk variance approval for impervious coverage and a waiver/exception approval for parking.
   The Zoning Board unanimously voted to grant the variances and the waiver for additional parking. Without the waiver, the applicant would have had to create an additional 57 parking spaces.
   The board accepted the applicant’s traffic study, which determined that 30-40 percent of the current parking spaces were empty at peak hours of operation. Wegman’s will create more handicapped parking spaces in the front of the store and two pedestrian walkways in the parking lot. The latter will be done with the oversight of township professionals, as per the stipulations of the board upon granting the variances and waiver.
   The borough engineer said the current retention basin is oversized and could handle any additional runoff from the expansion.
   The board and its professionals also believed the applicant demonstrated that the site could accommodate an increase in flooring.