City of Taunton to Hear Proposal to Replace Benjamin's with Residential Development
It looks like a now-closed landmark restaurant could become the site of a residential development, pending approval of a special permit.
The Taunton Daily Gazette is reporting that a proposal may be looked at in a city council hearing on Tuesday, April 5 that would turn the former Benjamin's site into a 23-unit multi-family residential development. This follows an unsuccessful September auction of the Bay Street property and a second auction in January that focused on fixtures, furniture, kitchen equipment, and more. At the time of the second auction, it was reported here that Mechanics Cooperative Bank filed an application for a demolition permit for the restaurant just in case a buyer was not found, with the sole remaining option possibly being to tear it down and replace it with new development.
[May 24 update: A new article in the Taunton Daily Gazette states that the city council has voted against plans to replace the former Benjamin's site with apartments, which means that the future of the property remains up in the air.]
Benjamin's, which first opened its doors in 1968, had been a landmark dining destination that featured mostly classic American items in a formal environment, along with space for events and functions. The restaurant shut down last May and filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
The address for the Benjamin's property is 698 Bay Street, Taunton, MA, 02780.
Auction for Benjamin's Fixtures, Equipment Being Held; Demolition Permit Application Submitted
Auction of Benjamin's Restaurant in Taunton Unsuccessful
Benjamin's Restaurant in Taunton Has Closed
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[A related post from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): List of Restaurant Closings and Openings in the Boston Area]