Zoners approve new William Raveis headquarters in Shelton

Zoning approval has been granted to renovate a building at 2 Research Drive in Shelton to become the new headquarters of William Raveis Real Estate.

The 52,000-square-foot building now is vacant, and will actually become about 20% smaller with the alterations, said Joe Pereira, an engineer with Pereira Engineering in Shelton. Additional parking spaces will be added as part of the project.

“It’s going to be a huge improvement over what’s there now,” Pereira, representing the applicant, told the city Planning and Zoning Commission (P&Z) at its Feb. 11 meeting.

The P&Z unanimously approved the application to modify the existing site plan for the five-acre property.

Raveis to move headquarters there

The building is near Progress Drive and Trap Falls Road, and previously was used by A.O. Sherman and Dresser Industries as research and light manufacturing space.

The structure is across the street from the North American headquarters of Bic Corp., which is at 1 Research Drive.

Raveis has purchased the building for $2 million from Shelton Associates LP, and the real estate firm plans to move its headquarters there from just around the corner at 7 Trap Falls Road.

Renovations to create office space

The existing 2 Research Drive building includes mostly warehouse space with some limited office space.

Pereira said the existing office space area will be demolished, with the renovated structure then being used for Class A office space.

Robert D. Scinto, the well-known developer who also spoke for the applicant, said the building’s front facade would include terra-cotta stone and bluestone.

A garden area will be created in the center of the renovated building, said Pereira, whose company is handling the renovation project.

P&Z member Thomas McGorty said the design would create “a nice looking building.”

P&Z member Nancy Dickal said the improvements at 2 Research Drive “could lead to other nearby buildings being upgraded.”

Changes in parking, driveways, drainage

The front parking lot will be upgraded to include 40 parking spaces, while no major changes would be made to the larger rear parking lot. There would be a total of 164 parking spaces on the property.

The one-way driveway in the front will be altered to become a two-way driveway.

A storm water management system will be added to better handle water run-off from the parking lots and driveways, according to Pereira.

Raveis is large realty firm

William Raveis Real Estate is the No. 1 family-owned realty firm in the Northeast, and the No. 3 largest family-owned real estate company in the United States, according to the company’s publicity material.

The company has 3,000 sales associates, managers, mortgage and insurance personnel, and other staff. It generates annual real estate sales of $5.6 billion and a total mortgage volume of $9 billion, and handles 2,500 corporate relocation transferees a year.