Video: Pinkberry Frozen Yogurt request for a take-out license on Hanover St. at March 14, 2013 NEWRA meeting.
The North End / Waterfront Residents’ Association (NEWRA) voted 26-10 to support a Pinkberry franchise location at 283-285 Hanover Street.
West coast frozen yogurt chain franchise owners, NE Frog Pond LLC, presented the zoning relief application at this week’s meeting with Attorney Daniel Toscano. The franchisee has the rights to establish 15 Pinkberry units in the New England area, with several already in operation including Harvard Square and South Station.
The proposed North End location with 700 square feet was formerly Varese Shoes and most recently Nahas Shoes. The zoning variance is to change the occupancy to allow 8 seats for a retail store, the Pinkberry frozen yogurt shop (with the existing apartments above) and a #36A take-out license.
The requested license is for 12:00 am midnight closing on weekends and 11:00 pm weekdays. At the NEWRA meeting, an abutter expressed a concern that the Pinkberry shop will become a late night destination on Hanover Street. Another resident raised the issue that franchise chains are not known for giving back to the neighborhood.
In answer to a question, the Pinkberry operator committed to no outside tables, chairs or signs on the Hanover St. sidewalk.
The stores now offer a Greek breakfast yogurt with toppings and will be open about 9:00 am. The Pinkberry franchisee said they would will be willing to purchase a Big Belly trash receptacle for the sidewalk outside the store and plans to use simple signage (no neon) on an awning.
The Neighborhood Council (NEWNC) is expected vote on the request in April. Both groups are advisory and the final zoning relief decision will be made by the Zoning Board of Appeal. A ZBA hearing is scheduled for April 9, 2013 at City Hall, Room 801.