A shoreline businessman is hoping to open a new, upscale independent coffee shop in the Trolley Square Plaza in East Haven.
Richard Cordeiro, a Branford native and now Guilford resident, has submitted plans to the town's zoning office for the proposed new cafe, which he is hoping to move into the vacant 1,635-square-foot office space next door to the U.S. Post Office in the busy shopping center.
A rough sketch of the current floor plans is posted in the gallery.
"We basically want to have a place for people to come in, enjoy their coffee and spend some time," Cordeiro told Patch.
'Nothing Else Like This in East Haven'
Cordeiro said the shop would not only feature quality coffee drinks, but also a self-serve area for frozen yogurt.
The plans for the cafe include an area for outdoor seating, and state-of-the-art wireless internet access.
"And we'll also have iPads mounted into some of the counter tops," Cordeiro said, adding that the cafe would lean toward a focus on technology.
"There are no competitors really doing what we're looking to do," he said.
"I think it will end up being a very popular spot," he said. "There is nothing else like this in East Haven."
Leasing Talks: Stop & Shop Is Key
But first they have to secure the space.
The shopping center itself is owned by Cb Commercial Prime Properties LLC, according to the latest listing on Manta.com.
Frank Biancur Jr, the town's new zoning officer, told East Haven Patch that while the proposed project would still be required to obtain the necessary approvals from the town, he feels the cafe would be a positive new business for East Haven.
And so, Cordeiro said the decision of whether or not plans for the cafe can move forward hinges on the current leasing negotiations — and whether or not Stop & Shop also agrees to allow the coffee shop to open its doors as it's now planned.
Stop & Shop Approval
Cordeiro said the supermarket chain — by far the plaza's largest occupant — could object to the outdoor seating or the fact that the shop would be selling coffee. The supermarket has its own small coffee kiosk for customers inside the store.
"Stop & Shop has got to be OK with it, too," he said. "It's the only thing that we're contingent."
Still, Cordeiro said, things have been positive with the talks and for the project as a whole.
"So far, all the indications are that it's fine," he said.
Cordeiro said the negotiations will continue, and he hoped to have an update on the project's status next week.
"When we saw this space came up we jumped at it," told Patch.
"This is a perfect opportunity for the town of East Haven," he said.
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