Nail Salon Owners to Town: No More Nail Salons

A group of nail salon owners and workers say there are too many such businesses in New Canaan and they’re urging the town to limit the number of them, officials say. About a dozen salon representatives came to Town Hall this month to meet with the town planner about regulating the number of nail salons in New Canaan, such as through a moratorium, according to a memo issued by Town Planner Lynn Brooks Avni ahead of Tuesday night’s meeting of the Planning & Zoning Commission. 

“The nail salon owners did note that the additional wellness boutiques that are opening in the downtown also provide similar services,” Brooks Avni said in the memo. “From a land use perspective it would be difficult to justify a moratorium on nail salons. Several boutique wellness studios have opened downtown as a result of the innovative legislation adopted by this Commission at its April 2018 meeting which included ‘wellness activities’ in the definition of ‘Personal Service Establishments.’ These boutique wellness studios have occupied what were previously vacant storefronts in the downtown.”

She referred to P&Z’s decision to amend the regulations so that service businesses could occupy street-level commercial spaces on Main and Elm Streets so long as they have a retail section in front. A Google search of “nail salon” in New Canaan returns 18 businesses, including spas that offer nail-related services.

Town Seeks To Enforce Rules About Keeping Downtown Sidewalks Clear

Seeking to ensure that downtown sidewalks are clear for pedestrians, officials said last week that a Planning & Zoning officer could be assigned to enforce local rules. Under the Town Code, items such as benches, tables, chairs, signs or commercial displays cannot obstruct sight lines or pedestrian passage on sidewalks. Though the town allows for “certain things that are considered good,” merchants sometimes take advantage by going too far, according to Public Works Director Tiger Mann. “It’s nice to have bench and put a table out there, but four chairs around it as a display case in front of the building, it’s a little too much,” Mann said during a Jan. 29 meeting of a Planning & Zoning Commission subcommittee.