Challenge to car wash plans in Dover dismissed

DOVER — Plans to build a car wash on the site of the former landmark Kirby & Holloway Family Restaurant remained in place after a challenge was denied in Superior Court last week.

While Race Track Car Wash pointed to alleged water supply damage and aesthetic harm that the new construction at 656 N. DuPont Highway would cause, Judge Jeffrey C. Clark found the business did not show any injury and thus could not contest the plans.

The matter was submitted on Aug. 7 and decided on Sept. 5 in a 19-page opinion.

Lawyers for the one-acre site owner Bluesky Dover Properties placed “significant emphasis on the fact that Race Track is an economic competitor,” Judge Clark noted.

However, according to the Court, the challenge could be sustained if a “valid environmental claim was present.”

While Race Track submitted documents regarding area groundwater, Judge Clark said the Court was “not equipped” to make a conclusion on their content.

Also, there was nothing to show that Race Track’s property used water for drinking purposes or that it “even has employees at its site.”
Race Track did not show an “actual reliance on clean water” for operations, according to the order.

A buffer between the adjacent U.S. 13 highway and the property was also in question, but Race Track did not show that its own aesthetics were adversely affected by the proposed structure, the Court determined.

Following a Feb 6. meeting, Dover’s Development Advisory Committee recommended approving Bluesky’s application to build a 5,194 square foot car wash. After two meetings the Dover Planning Committee issued written approval for the plans on April 15.

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