To the editor:
A Dillons drive-through pharmacy in the right-of-way of New Hampshire Street is 100 percent wrong for Barker Neighborhood. Commercial activity fewer than 50 feet from residential property and facing single-family homes is wrong. That’s why no other drive-through in Lawrence encroaches into a neighborhood like the proposed Dillons drive-through would. No other business conducts business on the New Hampshire side of the street. A drive-through would dramatically alter Barker’s environment. New traffic, new congestion, much more noise, worse air quality — and all throughout day and evening hours, seven days a week, hours that are now quiet the vast majority of the time.
We want the new Dillons store, but the concessions neighbors have already made are enough. These include zero setbacks bringing the store 25 feet closer to homes even without a drive-through, increased traffic, an ingress from New Hampshire to the main store, an emergency exit on New Hampshire, more traffic congestion during peak hours, a north-facing store, and a loading dock on our historic Massachusetts Street.
Preserving neighborhood integrity is a City Commission goal. We ask the City Commission to insist that the drive-through be located elsewhere or not at all. Dillons may suggest it is critical to their success, however there are many instances when CVS and Walgreen’s stores have gone into residential areas without drive-throughs. If pharmacies can do it, surely grocery stores can too.