New town fuel depot to be built in parking lot of Burrillville police station

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BURRILLVILLE – A parking lot at the public safety complex at 1477 Victory Highway will soon be home to a new fuel depot servicing town vehicles.

A municipal fuel station will be constructed in the parking area on the opposite side of the property from the playground at the Burrillville Police Department headquarters, known as the Wallace F. Lees Public Safety Complex. The depot will serve police vehicles, as well as trucks and equipment operated by the town’s Department of Public Works.

It will replace the current station at 65 Union Ave., the former home of the town’s DPW department before its move to Clear River Drive, which will soon be decommissioned.

“We’re going to close that one down at some point,” explained Town Planner Raymond Goff of the small fueling area.

Preliminary plans prepared by Massachusetts-based Green International Affiliates, Inc. show that construction of the new station will have minimal affect on current operations on the 19.6 acre Victory Highway property. Hero Park, a playground first opened in 2015, will remain in place, along with the smaller parking lot between those facilities and the station itself.

There will be a loss of some parking spaces at a second lot on the other side of the building, where visitors currently access the dispatch desk, down from 28 to 19. The station is expected to feature a canopy roof and hold 6,000 gallon diesel and regular gasoline tanks, according to the plans.

Initial design of the structure was financed as part of the town’s 2023 capital improvement budget, with $575,000 set aside in CIP funds this year for the planned construction. The planner said that while he does not know an exact timeline for the project, construction is expected to begin as soon as possible.

Goff noted designs for the depot will not be subject to Planning Board scrutiny and can be approved administratively as a result of code changes passed by the state General Assembly that went into effect this year.

“That changed a lot of our processes,” Goff said, noting that such administrative approvals will also be used for new buildings in town of less than 10,000 square feet. “That’s how a lot of these smaller things are going to happen.”

Goff said the future of the property that holds the town’s current fuel depot on Union Avenue is not yet clear.

“There’s a few ideas that we’re kicking around,” he said of that town-owned lot. “It could potentially even be sold.”

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