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Walgreens Arrival Worries Dobbs Ferry Businesses

DOBBS FERRY -- Dobbs Ferry is home to many locally owned restaurants, cafes and delis, but there aren't many big chain companies in the village. That could change soon as there are plans in place for Walgreens to move into town, at the expense of G&L Deli , Off Broadway restaurant and Brothers Market .

"I don't think the town needs something like that," said G&L Deli owner Joe Sanzo.

With so many small businesses in the community there was a larger than usual turnout at the Board of Trustees meeting on Tuesday. Most of the crowd was there in support of these local businesses and voiced their displeasure with the plan for a potential Walgreens.

"A lot of kids showed up at the meeting the other night and what was surprising was they weren't going up there saying rah rah G&L," Sanzo said. "They were stating facts."

Be that as it may, the local support obviously uplifted the deli owner.

"I was in shock myself, I couldn't believe it," Sanzo said. "It's a great feeling, hopefully everybody can work together and we'll see what happens."

The Board of Trustees doesn't have the power to simply deny such an application by Walgreens though.

"They have a right to be there as long as you meet all the requirements," said Dobbs Ferry Village Administrator Marcus Serrano.

The Board will have some input though as they review whether or not the new business would negatively impact the community. Most concerns stem from a suspected increase in traffic with a store the magnitude of Walgreens in Dobbs Ferry.

"These are all local people that live here, they sleep here, they eat and drink and everything else here," Sanzo said. "They see the traffic that's here and they see what's going on," Sanzo said.

When asked about the possible affects the drug store chain could have on the village, Sanzo simply said that Walgreens is "not for the town."

Some of the stores that would need to be relocated if Walgreens were to move in have been in Dobbs Ferry for a long time, 15 years in the case of G&L.

"There's nothing to fight," Sanzo said. "The town has the last decision. It's not up to us."

The Board of Trustees will review the application of Walgreens over a series of public hearings until it finalizes a decision. How long could this process actually take before it does reach a decision?

"It depends on how much information all of the [village] boards need," Serrano said.

The next hearing is scheduled for Tuesday June 28 at 7:30 p.m.

What's your opinion on a Walgreens replacing some of the local businesses? Do you think it's good or bad for the village?

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