Residents are concerned that outdoor seating at a new diner will disrupt their quality of life.
The council approved an application for outdoor seating at the Monarch Diner earlier this month. The diner opened a few weeks ago.
Several people who live on Nancy Court spoke out against the application before the vote was taken. They said that people who hang outside of are already loud at nighttime, especially on the weekend. Fuddruckers is located next to the diner.
Residents said adding more outdoor seating to the area would make the problem worse.
Wayne Berman said has to keep his window closed at night because of all the noise.
“It detracts from the residential calmness that we want,” Berman said.
Councilman Alan Purcell and Council President Joseph Scuralli voted against the application.
Scuralli said that while he isn’t against the application or what the diner is trying to do, he wants to see more of a dialogue between the diner and property owners and nearby residents.
“Nobody wants to live next to a place where you have to listen to that kind of stuff at night,” Scuralli said.
Residents also said that vehicles cut through the back of the parking lot late at night, making more noise. One resident said that his car was vandalized by a Fuddruckers patron.
The tables will be located at the front of the building facing Route 23 South, away from the houses. People will only be allowed to use the tables from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. although the diner will be open 24 hours a day. The diner is not licensed to sell alcohol.
Per town law, outdoor seating is permitted anytime between 7 a.m. and midnight. Other restaurants, including Panera, , and , offer outdoor seating, but those establishments are not located next to residential homes.
Diner owner Tina Diakos said that she does not want to present any kind of problem to local residents by having the seating.
“I want to bring families here and support Wayne,” Diakos said. “If the outdoor seating can make it so that parents get to spend more time with their kids, then I’m all for it.”
Diakos said that employees would park in the spaces located behind the diner, which, she said, should reduce the amount of noise coming from that side of the building.
The property has been home to several restaurants in recent years.
Property owner Todd Mano said that having the outdoor seating could give the diner the edge it needs to be successful.
“It’s a benefit to keep businesses in business and not scare them away,” Mano said. “We’re providing a service to the community.”
Councilman Chris McIntyre suggested the town place ‘no loitering’ signs in the area, especially near Fuddruckers, to discourage people from being loud and disrupting residents in their homes.