The parcel of land where a developer wants to erect three new buildings, including housing for those 55 and older. Rachel Vitello / The Forecaster

Residents of the Tidewater Village area of Falmouth say a proposed project that includes a restaurant and two new buildings would exacerbate congestion and other traffic problems that arrived when Rivalries restaurant moved into the neighborhood.

The development is being proposed in the area bordered by Clearwater Drive, Waterview Way, Marigold Lane and Farm Gate Road. The new restaurant would be across the street from Rivalries at 2 Hat Trick Drive.

Tidewater Village 3 includes space for either a new restaurant or medical or office space in a barn-style, 4,000-square-foot building on the western corner of the site, along with 8,700-square-foot and 10,200-square-foot, three-story, mixed-use buildings on the southern corner. The residential space would be market-rate, one- and two-bedroom condominiums for those 55 and older.

A sketch of the proposed project for Falmouth’s Tidewater Village shows two mixed-use buildings and plans for either a restaurant or a medical/office building. Contributed / Town of Falmouth

Falmouth resident and previous Tidewater Farm Homeowners Association Board member Robert Isler told The Forecaster that traffic in the area has been a major concern ever since Rivalries went up in 2016.

“Traffic on Farm Gate Road has dramatically increased following Rivalries. Speeding is a serious issue, especially given Farm Gate Road’s blind curves and relatively narrow width,” Isler said. “We have a family with young children living next to one of these and they are seriously concerned for their children’s safety. In my view, the town should insist on a formal traffic survey as part of the consideration of this project.”

Rivalries owner Lance Meader did not return a message seeking comment.


Farm Gate Road resident Janet Hutcheson spoke at the March 1 Planning Board meeting, where an initial discussion about the project was held.

“One of my concerns is the restaurant. One of the issues that has occurred with (Rivalries) is the supply trucks come and park oftentimes on Farm Gate, which makes it one-way traffic. I didn’t see any design where supplies were going to be unloaded,” Hutcheson said. “It seems like it would have to be on Farm Gate, which is not workable. It’s already a problem, so putting a second restaurant right across seems like it’s going to funnel too much commercial traffic on Farm Gate.”

Other Farm Gate Road and Marigold Lane residents aired similar concerns at the meeting.

“A good thing to think about would be putting a light at Farm Gate and Clearwater so it would act as a deterrent of people cutting through,” Farm Gate resident Kim Kralik said. “Instead, they would be more inclined to go up Depot Road or cut through Hat Trick, which is a commercial road and wouldn’t impact a residential neighborhood.”

Kralik also had concerns about the number of pedestrians who go for walks and runs, as well as children who play in the area, and how they would be impacted by an increase in traffic brought on by the development.

Planning Board member Ash Oberholtzer asked developer Michael Jacobson of Empire Development if he would consider positioning the restaurant elsewhere on the site.

“I don’t think having the restaurant building where it is is the issue, it’s the traffic pattern of where the delivery vehicles should be. That’s really what this is about,” Jacobson said. “We can create a loading zone on the site and do the best we can, but it’s not just on Farm Gate Road, it’s everywhere that there’s businesses that take deliveries. All we can do is try to designate locations in our lot for this type of use and hope the drivers and whoever shows up adheres to it.”

Jacobson said the project’s architect will propose elevations for the two buildings so engineers can get the information required to present to the Planning Board. Jacobson missed the deadline for the April Planning Board agenda, but said he hopes to present again at the May meeting.

“It’s early on. We would like community support,” Jacobson told The Forecaster. “We saw an opportunity in the Route 1 area. It’s important for everyone to understand that we’re approaching this based on what was designed and we want to do what works and be respectful developers.”

Comments are not available on this story.