WESTFIELD, NJ — There’s going to be some style coming to South Avenue in the form of salon whose owner intends to move from his existing location in town.

The Planning Board has approved an application by Victor Passucci, owner of Victor Passucci Salon, to build a new three-story, 1,653-square-foot building comprised of the salon and apartments at 812 South Ave. West.

Passucci obtained variances for parking, front yard setback and lot coverage area at Tuesday’s board meeting. The parking variance will allow for 14 parking spaces in a lot where 15.2 would be required under the regulations.

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Passucci said he plans vacate his existing location at 210 South Ave. West when he moves to the new building, once it is completed. He anticipates that will happen next year.

“We’re always asking how can we get better how can we improve the client experience, and I think this is one way of improving the layout,’ Passucci told the board.

Services offered will include hair cutting and coloring, said Passucci, who lives in nearby Scotch Plains. There will be no nail services, he said. 

The plans call for two one-bedroom apartments and one two-bedroom apartment.

Thomas Quinn, a civil engineer representing Passucci, said a drainage pit would capture the rain runoff on the property. There will also be some pizazz to the landscape.

“We’ve got some patches of periwinkle out from to add some color,” Quinn said. Plantings will include sky-pencil holly, he said.

Two trees will have to be cut down to make room for the building, Quinn said.

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The salon will include eight styling stations, said Gregory Ralph, an architect representing Passucci. The façade will include paneling and a recessed area comprised of stone, Ralph said.

“Three stories are permitted in the zone so, in terms of the bulk of the building, we’re not asking for any variance pertaining to the size, shape and height,” Ralph said. A portion of the building will include tan-colored stucco, he said.

A property owner on nearby North Avenue, Carolyn Kircher, objected to the plans based on the proposed look.

“The bulk of the property, it’s just not in keeping with the spirit of the town of Westfield,” Kircher told the board. “I do not think we want to go the direction of Kearny and Staten Island.”

Board members asked if the 14 parking spaces would be enough. Passucci agreed to have no more than three beauticians working at any time so as to mitigate any parking issues.

While neighbors also questioned the parking variance, the board voted unanimously to grant the expectation for about one less space than that which the local regulation requires based on the proposed building’s square footage.

Mayor Shelley Brindle, who sits on the planning board, said a shortage of parking is a town-wide problem, one she intends to examine more closely. “I don’t think this application has to be penalized,” Brindle said.

Email Staff Writer Matt Kadosh at mkadosh@tapinto.net; Follow him on Twitter: @MattKadosh

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