Champaben Patel and her son, Regal, have owned the Rocky River Motel on Kent Road in New Milford for 16 years.

The mother and son business team now hope to build a 4,000-plus square-foot convenience store and restaurant on the property next door, with retail storefront included.

"We get thousands of guests staying at the motel annually who don't know the New Milford area," explained Regal Patel last week. "They always want to know where they can go to eat or to buy various items they need. Building a location next door to serve them made sense."

The Patels were set to go before the New Milford Zoning Commission for a special permit and site plan application for the structure.

Until the economic downturn in 2008, the Patels had planned to build an "extended stay" hotel at the site. With that plan put on hold, they struck upon the idea of meeting the needs of their Rocky River Motel guests.

"We're thinking of opening an Indian restaurant," Mr. Patel said. "We have so many people coming into the office at the motel who ask what smells so good when we're having our own meals."

Mr. Patel is also talking with a local tile installation company about opening a tile and home decor store in the 1,100-square-foot retail space in the building.