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Red Robin ready to swoop into Wilbraham

By Courtney Llewellyn

Reminder Assistant Editor

WILBRAHAM Big Y won't be the only new addition to the Boston Road corridor in Wilbraham this summer. Rob Hawley, senior vice-president of Red Robin Gourmet Burgers, recently gained approval from the Planning Board and the Zoning Board of Appeals to build a restaurant at 2039 Boston Rd.

Hawley, along with Attorney John Soja and Gregg Sapore, owner of the property, came before the Zoning Board of Appeals on June 26 to request a special permit for outdoor dining at the future restaurant and were granted the permit.

The group presented photographs and sketches of what the new Red Robin will look like to the board as well as what the building will look like from different elevation in various directions.

"The space [where the restaurant will be] was in the original site plan for the supermarket," Sapore explained.

The building itself will have 5,800 square feet of floor space, which will hold approximately 200 seats, and an outside patio area, which will measure 686 square feet, will hold a maximum of 32 seats.

The patio area will be enclosed with a black wrought iron fence and a gate will be used for exiting only.

The new Red Robin will be open Sunday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.

"It will be a little smaller [than the restaurant in Enfield, Conn.], but the exterior will look the same," Hawley explained.

His group has already gone before the Planning Board and met with Captain Nick Yarmac of the Wilbraham Fire Department, both of whom have laid out provisions the restaurant must follow.

"They'll have to come back before the Planning Board for lighting and signage approval, but otherwise all the issues have been addressed," Planning Board member Ted Stevenson said.

Lance Trevallion, the town's building inspector, asked that once construction begins that the area is fenced off, since the plaza is now active with customers of the supermarket.

It was not known at press time when the restaurant would be opened.