Plans for a new restaurant to replace the former Segway site in Boston’s North End suffered a setback this week as members of a neighborhood group voted to oppose a zoning variance request. The 5-4 vote by the North End/Waterfront Neighborhood Council on Monday night is a setback for Damien DiPaola , operator of Carmelina’s on Hanover Street.
The proposed 54 seat restaurant proposed for the former Segway site at 420 Commercial Street, has suffered a setback with some neighbors expressing their concerns over late night noise, traffic, garbage pickups, rodent infestation and other safety issues. Some have expressed the idea of even having more small retail outlets than more restaurants.
Proponents say that a restaurant with outdoor seating would enliven and brighten was is now a dark corner of the North End. Boston Zoning Board approval is required to change the occupancy in the 2766 square foot property from multifamily to restaurant and offices, including seasonal outdoor seating and take out usage. The site was formerly a Mobil Gas Station and in 2011, it became a Segway office. Segway is currently located on Canal Street.
Neighborhood approval is not required, but the ZBA always considers neighborhood opinions when deliberating a property zoning or usage change.