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Simpsonville City Commission: Police, city, outlet officials working on traffic plans

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Opening week will see some off-site parking

By Todd Martin

Simpsonville city officials are beginning to make plans for the opening of the new Outlet Shoppes of the Bluegrass on July 30-31.

City Administrator David Eaton told the commission at Tuesday’s regular meeting that the city’s police force was working with the mall developers and Kentucky State Police on a traffic plan to ensure safety and a smooth opening for both the VIP event on July 30 and the official grand opening on July 31 of the 364,000-square-foot Outlet Shoppes of the Bluegrass located at the intersection of Buck Creek and Veechdale roads just south of Interstate 64..

“I know they’re working hard on that right now,” he said.

Chip Minnis, the Simpsonville police chief, said that plan is still in the development phase, but they hope to finished by July 15 or no later than the 20th.

“We’ve met a few times to start mapping that plan out,” he said.

Minnis said so far, the plan includes have stationed points at the Buck Creek Road intersections of U.S. 60, the Pilot Station, the Shelby County Flea Market, both east and west bound ramps from I-64 and at Veechdale Road. He also noted that the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office wouldn’t be able to help too much because those dates also correspond with the opening nights of the Shelbyville Horse Show.

“The two biggest events in Shelby County, and they’re on the same nights,” Minnis said with a laugh. “But we don’t expect that to cause any extra traffic tie up. That first night I believe there will be more out of town visitors. Then on the second day the ceremonies are at ten in the morning, and I think people will start to show up between eight-thirty and nine. So those shouldn’t interfere with the horse show at all.”

The plan also calls for some extra off-site parking.

“We’re going to have off-site parking at the Shelby County Flea Market, especially for those people coming in from the north and the east,” he said. “And then we’ll also have some additional parking in the property across [Veechdale] road, as long as it doesn’t rain. And we’ll have shuttles running back and forth.

“The key will be preparing folks to be patient. It’s going to be crowded, so just be patient and it will go by a lot better,” he said.

If all the off-site parking is available, Minnis said there will be more than 6,200 parking spots.

“But if it rains, we’ll only have about forty-five hundred,” he said.

 

Also at the meeting, the commission:

  • Approved on second reading non-competitive franchise agreements for Louisville Gas & Electric and Atmos Energy for gas service and Kentucky Utilities for electric service.
  • Heard from commissioner Cary Vowels that the Simpsonville Police Department now has its own domain on the city’s Web site. To see the department’s new Web site, visit www.simpsonvillekypolice.com.
  • Approved on first reading an ordinance to allow a new car dealer to display up to six vehicles in the county at one time. Eaton said the move was to allow dealerships to display primarily at the new Outlet Shoppes of the Bluegrass. The dealerships will not be allowed to make sales at the site of the display.
  • Heard in a report from Eaton that the new fiscal year started July 1, so the commission can expect a budget amendment at the next meeting, July 17, to close out the 2013-14 fiscal year. “You had a very good year, very successful year,” he said.