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Dunkin’ Donuts Decision Delayed by P&Z Board

A developer wants to put a Dunkin' Donuts franchise in at the Oakbrook Plaza.
A developer wants to put a Dunkin’ Donuts franchise in at the Oakbrook Plaza.

A developer hoping to put a new Dunkin’ Donuts franchise in the Oakbrook Plaza on McMullen Booth Road was turned away by the Safety Harbor Planning and Zoning Board on Wednesday night.

The board told Todd Pressman of Todd Pressman Associates, LTD. to come up with a new site plan featuring upgrades in four different areas, and then bring the new plan back before the committee for approval again next month.

The four items to be addressed, according to board member Joe Faw, include the following: directional signage; general traffic flow; screenage on the south side of the drive-thru area; and drive-thru aisle width.

“I think he should digest what we said,” Faw said, “and I think it should be cleared up before we send it before the City Commission.”

The issues raised mainly center around the configuration of the restaurant’s drive-thru and parking areas in relationship to the plaza.

With the Dunkin’ Donuts being constructed on the south side of the main building opposite the Subway shop, patrons would have to drive around the entire building to get to the drive-thru window.

Some board members felt it was of vital importance to have signs pointing customers where to go to help eliminate confusion in the crowded plaza parking lot.

“How will people know where the drive-thru is?” Tom Tracy asked.

Pressman replied by saying directional signage was not in the original plans, but he would be more than willing to add it.

“I don’t have a problem with adding directional signs,” Pressman said. “Sounds very good.”

Other board members expressed concern over the sheer amount of volume of traffic a popular franchise like Dunkin’ Donuts would bring to the plaza, which could potentially lead to parking lot incidents on a regular basis.

“You have multiple conflict points here…cars turning in opposite directions,” Frank DeLuca said. “I have a problem with that…and in my opinion, it should not be done.”

Linda Marshall concurred with her colleague.

“I’m concerned about the traffic circulation,” she said. “That part of the development has not seen any traffic. We’re introducing a different use for that space, and I believe it needs to be handled well.”

Additionally, board members also asked Pressman to address the area on the southernmost point of the property along the proposed drive-thru, which is currently home to large HVAC units and other unsightly industrial equipment, and to consider adding green spaces outside the restaurant where parking spaces would be removed.

For his part, Pressman said he has no problem accommodating the board’s requests.

“We always work well with the city,” he told Safety Harbor Connect afterwards. “They raised some interesting issues. We’ll take a look at what they said and come back with some revisions.”

The Safety Harbor Planning and Zoning Board meets again on December 11.


  1. Todd Pressman is the worst representative a company could hire to represent them in a land zoning issue! This firm is totally incompetent.

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