CVS, the Rhode Island based convenience store chain, with more than $15 billion in revenue and 4,100 stores, has run into a “Mammoth” problem in the town of Londonderry, NH. CVS wants to build a 10,000 s.f. store on a 5 acre parcel near the corner of Mammoth Road and Nashua Road, both of which are state highways. Residents fear that the corporation will demolish a historic 1877 victorian home known as the Robie place. When Myron Robie died earlier this year, the estate’s executor reportedly put the 5 acre estate up for auction, selling the property to a developer from Maine. The developer has submitted a site plan to build a CVS. New Hampshire already has 30 CVS stores. The site plan calls for the convenience store to be located on the lot about 160 feet from the victorian home. The town’s Historic District commission is seeking to give the Robie house historic district status, but the developer’s attorney says the store will not impact the old house. The estate executor, meanwhile, has taken out a demolition permit. The developer’s attorney, however, said the demolition permit was only a protective move to keep the estate from having an “albatross” on its hands. The CVS location is also opposed by the citizen’s group, the Londonderry Community Network, which is promoting “aggressive growth management” and commercial development “in appropriate locations.” CVS says it likes highly visible locations with “pylon sign identity”, and “high traffic locations on country type roads. It prefers free-standing sites with drive through capability, and parking for 40-60 cars. Mark Oswald, a cofounder of the LCN, told the Union-Leader newspaper: “I think we need to do more to protect the quality of life and historic significance that we have in this town. We need to take initiative as citizens to protect some of our fleeting heritage.” The Planning Commission will take up the CVS site plan this month, June of 1998.
Write or call the CVS Real Estate Department at: One CVS Drive, Woonsocket, RI 02895. (401) 765-1500 x. 4310. Tell the real estate people at CVS to “save the Robie House in Londonderry, NH” and look for some smaller, downtown location where their store will fit in better with the local community. Tell them they are making a “mammoth” mistake on Mammoth Road in Londonderry!