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Self-Serve Fro Yo Shop To Replace Katonah Yarn

KATONAH, N.Y. — Mount Kisco has Frannie’s Goodie Shop, Somers has Aunt B Yogurt Bar, and now Katonah is jumping on the self-serve frozen yogurt trend: newcomer Twist Frozen Yogurt Store plans to replace Katonah Yarn at 120 Bedford Road.

At Monday’s Bedford Planning Board meeting, architect Eric Singer, a representative of applicants Kevin McKenna and his wife, requested permission to alter the existing building to open a self-serve yogurt shop. Singer also requested that the board waive the requirement of site plan approval, since changes to the building would be minimal.

The McKennas are in the process of leasing Katonah Yarn’s old space in the building, which also houses a dentist’s office. The knitting shop closed in May after six years in the spot, located in the A&P shopping center.

The store will operate with six machines that each dispense a different yogurt flavor for customers to swirl into their cups and top with various choices from the topping bar. The product is then priced by weight.

Jeff Rednick of Rednick Realty said that he and the Katonah-based couple are hammering out the final points of the lease. Rednick expects the signing to happen soon since “there are no major hurdles to overcome,” he said.

At the moment, the shop will only offer indoor banquette seating, said Singer, but a member of the board voiced that he was concerned about safety if people stand outside to eat their yogurt.

“I think in particular this business is something that may well attract children,” board member Deirdre Courtney-Batson said. "So I think extra safety would be a good idea."

Town Planner Jeff Osterman suggested that if the business becomes as successful as the planning board predicts, the owners may need to separate the area from the rest of the parking lot, which can get congested with high volumes of traffic generated from A&P and Oliver's Pub.

"There’s never been an issue in front of that parking lot and you could use either side of the building and you could make something really attractive," he said.

Town planning secretary Gail Amyot said a possible solution could be putting up a small fence to enclose the area or making a small secured zone on either side or in the back, perhaps through creative landscaping.

Osterman said the proposed store falls under the new café ordinance, a revision in the town code approved by the planning board in October 2010 that creates a new classification of dining facility. It allows stores that sell food and beverages meant to be consumed at home, such as a bakery or a deli, to offer on-premises eating as well.

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