Plans for gas station underway

  • This image, included with a traffic impact study prepared by McMahon Transportation Engineers & Planners, shows the location of the proposed gas station with convenience store and drive-through at Exit 18 on Templeton Road in Athol. SUBMITTED PHOTO

Staff Writer
Published: 6/1/2018 11:02:32 PM

ATHOL — Plans for the construction of a convenience store and self-service gas station on Templeton Road at Exit 18 are underway.

The project calls for construction of a Shell gas station with six multi-product fuel dispensers and three diesel pumps, a 5,112 square-foot convenience store and 800 square-foot Dunkin’ Donuts location with a drive-through window. Access to the development will be by two proposed full-access site driveways on Templeton Road.

Engineer Jesse Johnson of Bohler Engineering in Southborough filed a major site plan with the Board of Planning and Community Development for the applicant, Kayrouz Realty LLC, and abutters within 100 feet of the property line were notified on May 17.

At a recent meeting with the conservation commission, Johnson fielded questions about stormwater drainage, snow removal, protection of groundwater and pollution control. A continuance was granted for the June meeting to provide more detailed information.

Construction could begin as early as this fall.

Traffic impact study

McMahon Transportation Engineers & Planners provided a traffic impact study for the Athol gas station. It was conducted in three steps. The first was an inventory of existing traffic conditions involving traffic counts at key intersections during morning and afternoon peak periods and crash data from the Massachusetts Department of Transportation to evaluate existing traffic operations and safety conditions. The second involved projected traffic demands of other future developments that could affect traffic volumes at the intersections studied.

The final step was to evaluate if measures were necessary to improve operations to provide access to the project site.

It is noted the area already has a signal. The eastbound Templeton Road approach provides a through lane and a channelized right-turn lane under yield control. The westbound approach provides a through-land and an exclusive left-turn lane. Bicycle lanes are provided on both approaches, which merge with the roadway shoulders approximately 300 feet to the east side of the intersection. The northbound Route 2 westbound ramp approach consists of a left-turn lane and a channelized right turn lane under yield control.

According to the report — based on a review of the traffic count data — the weekday morning peak hour of traffic occurs between 7 and 8 a.m., and the afternoon peak hour is 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. Based on data, traffic volumes in April are lower than an average month in this area.

Crash summary

Crash data for the most recent five-year period revealed eight crashes in that area. There were no fatal crashes. The intersection was unsignalized with the Route 2 westbound ramps until 2014. Three of the crashes were single-vehicle crashes resulting in personal injury, and two were rear-end collisions, two were angle collisions and one sideswipe.

According to the report, the development is projected to result in approximately 76 new vehicle trips (39 vehicles entering, 37 vehicles exiting) during the weekday morning peak hour, and approximately 95 new vehicle trips (48 vehicles entering, 47 vehicles exiting) during the weekday afternoon peak hour.

The capacity analysis indicates the proposed development will not have a significant impact on the operations of the study area intersections or roadways. Based on the analysis results presented in the report, the study area roadways and intersection are shown to operate acceptably with the proposed development in place.

The next conservation commission meeting is scheduled for June 26 at 6 p.m. in Liberty Hall, 584 Main St.

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