Piccolo Trattoria will expand its Newtown location and add an outdoor dining area

NEWTOWN TOWNSHIP, Pa. — Piccolo Trattoria will expand its 4,146-square-foot Italian sit-down and take-out restaurant at the Newtown Mall on West Road.

The restaurant, located a few doors down from the ACME, received conditional use and land use approvals from the township on August 10 to expand into the former dog and cat rule space next door. . The expansion will allow the restaurant to enlarge its kitchen and
dining room.

As part of the expansion, the restaurant will also build a 2,212 square foot covered outdoor dining area with 112 seats at the west end of the mall. A knee-high wall will surround the terrace to protect diners from the parking area and the access road.

The grassy area, where the outdoor seating will be located, had been put on hold by the mall for six additional parking spaces. These spaces will now be suspended in front of the outdoor dining area with a future pedestrian crossing planned between the end of
the shopping center and the future car park.

Two trees (located at the rear of the new outdoor dining site) will be removed and replaced with other native trees as part of the project. A third tree at the front of the area will remain.

In order to remain viable in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, restaurant owner Fahmi Elabed told supervisors at a previous meeting that restaurants now need an outdoor seating component/option for their customers.

Piccolo obtained zoning relief for the project in April, including a variance allowing an impermeable coverage rate of 59.87%, which is a 0.22% increase from what is currently allowed.

An exemption was also granted to allow the shopping center to continue to maintain 953 parking spaces, of which 169 are “held in reserve” while the addition of a patio would have required the construction of 15 additional parking spaces.

Council didn’t think parking would be a problem on this side of the Newtown Mall parking lot.

The zoning board added a condition that the outdoor seating area remains outdoor seating and cannot turn into de facto permanent seating.

“It’s a good thing for Newtown because Fahmi and Piccolo have been around for a long time,” supervisor Phil Calabro said. “He has also contributed to community causes. What you give back is fantastic and what you do is fantastic. It’s nice to see an existing business grow. It’s fantastic for Newtown Township.”

Piccolo also operates restaurants in Doylestown and Pennington, New Jersey.

Piccolo Trattoria is known for its Italian cuisine, including take-out pizzas, and as a destination for intimate get-togethers for family and friends. All three locations offer an atmospheric Old World ambiance with Italian flair, creativity and quality.

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