Westborough selectmen approve liquor license for store inside Stop & Shop

100

By Bonnie Adams, Government Editor

Westborough selectmen approve liquor license for store inside Stop & ShopWestborough –At its Feb. 14 meeting, the Board of Selectmen approved a Wine and Malt Package Store Liquor License for LB Wines, Inc. to open a new store inside the Stop & Shop located at 290 Turnpike Road.

The new store's proprietor, Leslie Downey, and her attorney, Joe Devlin, said the store will only be selling malt and wine. It will be an approximately 1,500 square foot self-contained unit, near the front of the Stop & Shop and will only have one entrance/exit, Devlin said. And although the store is a separate entity, Downey said she will still be working closely with Stop and Shop security personnel.

Westborough attorney William Bloom, representing Kushal Patel, the proprietor of Top Shelf Wine & Spirits, 276 Turnpike St., voiced his client's objections regarding the LB Wines, Inc. proposal to the board.

Bloom said that Patel's store has only been open since November 2011. A new store so close by to his store would impact Patel's business in a negative way, he said.

Bloom added that he had a letter signed by six Westborough stores that sell alcohol that stated their objections to LB Wines, Inc. license request.

Patel also addressed the board, stating that athough his store is a full liquor store and LB Wines, Inc. will only sell wine and malt; both stores would be trying to attract the same consumers.

“We are trying to get the shoppers that go into Stop & Shop to also come to our store,” he said.

The majority of the selectmen voiced approval for the new store, citing their support for small local businesses that are trying to open in Westborough.

“I like that this is contained,” Selectman Leigh Emery said. “And no matter where we put one of the licenses, it is going to be near another liquor store [in the town].

“Attorney Bloom has some compelling arguments,” Selectman George Thompson said. “But that's the risk of opening up a new business.”

Lydia Goldblatt, the board's chair, however, said she agreed with Bloom's statements. She added that she also felt the liquor store would be better off situated to a far side of the store instead of where it is slated to go.

The board voted, 4-1, to approve the license, with Goldblatt dissenting. Downey said it will take approximately 45-60 days to get the new store ready to be open for business.