FALMOUTH — A Portland-based sports pub could be expanding to Falmouth as soon as next August.
Lance Meader, owner of Rivalries, and architect Michael Hays of Grant Hays Associates appeared before the Town Council Monday night to request amendments to the town’s Zoning Ordinance and the Tidewater Village Design guidelines to allow the business on Farm Gate Road.
The council was receptive to the proposal, with no opposition expressed. This was a preliminary introduction, and no action was taken.
Meader is a Falmouth resident, and Grant Hays is a Falmouth-based firm.
The proposed restaurant would be a two-story, 11,400-square-foot building with its entrance on Hat Trick Drive. It would seat 192 patrons on the two floors, with 16 bar seats and function spaces upstairs. Seasonal outdoor seating would allow for 32 more patrons.
The lot of almost half an acre is bordered by Clearwater Drive to the east, Farm Gate Road to the south, and the proposed Hat Trick Drive to the north. It is currently undeveloped.
Meader and Hays are seeking four amendments:
• A zoning change from commercial-only to restaurant and dining.
• An increase in the current maximum building size of 8,000 square feet.
• Changing the entrance from Farm Gate Road to Hat Trick Drive, a 180-degree turn that Mays said would reduce traffic on Farm Gate Road and allow the business address to utilize a play on the restaurant’s sports theme.
• And a request to widen the off-street parking radius to within 1,300 feet of the building. A cover letter to Town Manager Nathan Poore said this would allow 42 additional parking spots, coupled with the 22 already proposed on the site.
Meader emphasized that Rivalries, which has been in the Old Port at 10 Cotton St. since 2002, is “not the bar scene you think it is.” He said the business does $125,000 more in food sales than alcohol sales annually.
“We sell considerably more food in the Old Port (than alcohol),” Meader said. “That’s reflective of what we’d do here.”
Council Chairwoman Karen Farber asked Meader and Hays to consider looking into changing the zoning district lines, so that the property would be in the neighboring Village Center 1 zone, rather than seeking zoning amendments for Tidewater Village.
Hays said the property owners would want them to consider that as an option and do a full analysis.
The proposal will have to go before the council again, and Town Manager Nathan Poore told councilors the next time they see the project it will have a formal amendment attached to it.
The concept site plan for the proposed Rivalries sports pub and grill in Falmouth. The owner of the Portland-based restaurant and the architect for the project appeared before the Town Council on Dec. 8 to pitch developing the restaurant in Tidewater Village.