Residents Argue Proposed Taco Bell Project Won’t Attract ‘Upstanding Citizens’

Mohegan Lake Taco Bell
The drive-thru Taco Bell is proposed on the corner of Route 6 and Mohegan Avenue in Mohegan Lake.

A handful of residents in Mohegan Lake made it clear to the Yorktown Planning Board last week a proposed drive-thru Taco Bell on the corner of Route 6 and Mohegan Avenue is not welcomed in the neighborhood.

A Zoom public hearing was held April 12 on the 2,000-square-foot Taco Bell, with traffic concerns and unsavory customers dominating the remarks.

“Taco Bell doesn’t attract the most upstanding citizens,” remarked Amanda Puff. “I don’t feel putting a Taco Bell where there is a lot of young children is a smart move.”

In 2007, Yorktown officials approved a four-lot subdivision on the site, including a 4,000-square-foot bank in the same location where the Taco Bell is envisioned. The bank was never built since the property owner was unable to find a tenant. A credit union and daycare facility have occupied the site for years.

In 2018, the Yorktown Town Board rezoned the .83-acre property to commercial retail, paving the way for an eatery, such as Taco Bell, to seek occupancy.

“It just doesn’t make sense on that corner,” said Jaclyn Guerra, a resident of Lookout Street in Mohegan. “Taco Bell does cater to a certain clientele we don’t want in the area. It’s popular with drunk drivers. Traffic will just be 10 times worse.”

Stacy Williams-Kerr, a resident of Lakeshore Drive, said she was in a bad accident at the congested intersection near CVS.

“I’m very concerned about teenage drivers going to Taco Bell and navigating that intersection,” she said. “It’s a scary intersection. I would really implore the developer to see what they can do to improve that intersection.”

Paul Dumont, a senior designer and civil engineer with JMC Site Development Consultants, said in 2007 several traffic improvements were made at the Route 6/Mohegan Avenue intersection.

An online petition from Concerned Citizens for Mohegan Lake opposing the plan has generated more than 370 signatures.

The Planning Board adjourned the public hearing to its April 26 meeting.

“Everything that has been asked we will look at,” said Chairman Richard Fon. “We listen to every comment that is made.”