Proposal to shrink parking spaces
Lot would get an extra 30 spaces if request is granted
Starbucks’ latest plan for a shop in the former Sears parking lot at Colonie Center will give customers another place to grab their coffee. But don’t look for a parking space that’s a Grande or a Venti. They’ll all be one size: smaller.
In an era when American vehicle manufacturers are shedding the standardsize sedan so they can focus on ever-larger pickup trucks and SUVS, Colonie Center is asking planners to give it a waiver to shrink its parking spaces from the required 9 feet wide to just 81/2 feet wide.
The request came during a meeting last week of the Colonie planning board. Not surprisingly,
there was some pushback.
“Our standard parking stall is 9 feet by 18 feet, said Joe Lacivita, the town’s planning and economic development director. “They want to go to 81/2 by 18.
“They get an additional 30 spaces,” he said.
Lacivita pointed out that vehicle manufacturers are moving away from sedans and compacts.
“The SUVS and pickup trucks are all becoming the standard size,” he told a reporter. “Going to 81/2 is very concerning.”
Ford Motor Co. in April said it would stop making nearly all of its car nameplates to focus on the more profitable, and in demand, SUVS and pickup trucks. Last month, General Motors announced a similar move.
A Ford F-350 can measure as wide as 96 inches — that’s eight feet — so an 81/2-foot space would leave just three inches on each side of the truck. The F-150 is a bit narrower, a little over 7 feet, so there would be up to 9 inches on each side of the truck.
Advance Engineering & Surveying of Latham, which made the presentation, also submitted a parking study and analysis prepared by Colonie Center to support its proposal.
Colonie Center officials and the engineering firm didn’t respond to requests for comment.
But Lacivita said the planning board wants to move “cautiously” on the parking request.
Vehicles are seen parked in the parking lot at Colonie Center on Thursday in Colonie. A developer wants to narrow its parking spaces to 81⁄2 feet.
Construction is underway for the new Starbucks at Colonie Center near the corner of Central Ave. and Wolf rd. on thursday, in Colonie. the developer of Starbucks wants to narrow its parking spaces to 81⁄2 feet wide from 9 feet.