Triple S Planning Commission: Bob Evans approved for mall outlot

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Zone change, development plan approved on Walters property

By Lisa King

After having more time to review revised plans submitted just before the February Triple S Planning Commission meeting, Tuesday commissioner approved a plan for Bob Evans Restaurant on one of the Outlet Shoppes of the Bluegrass outlot parcels.

Commissioners had tabled the decision in February so they could have more time to review the plans.

Bob Evens’ officials again Tuesday asked to move landscaping requirements to an area that would be off their property line, reducing the area for landscaping from 8 feet to 3 feet, and also to change the signage setback on Buck Creek Road from 25 feet to 12 feet because of the addition of a sidewalk. They also wanted to add square footage on three additional fascia signs.

“We are not trying to overdo this; it’s just very consistent in keeping with outlet shops,” Kevin Young with Land Design and Development told the commission. “We just want to get sufficient identification [for the restaurant] for the traveling public.”

Kevin Petru, senior real estate manager for Bob Evans, also presented a letter to the commission from Horizon Group Properties Senior Vice President Tom Rumptz, endorsing Bob Evans plans.

Commissioner Scott Merchant recommended approving the development plan with some of those variances.

The landscape variance was approved, and the sign setback was approved for 17 ft feet from the property line. Bob Evans officials received approval to exceed the 50-foot sign restriction for an additional 8 feet.

However, commissioners denied two signs on the west and north sides of the building, but allowed a second sign on the front of the building.

Merchant’s motion, seconded by commissioner Dudley Bottom, met with unanimous approval by commissioners, but did not set well with the only person from the public who turned out for the matter.

Katie Sjothun had told commissioners before the vote to “show some backbone,” urging them not to approve variances for Bob Evans.

“They should be made to comply with your rules,” she said.

Afterwards, she said, “I’m just tired of companies coming in here and asking for variances and not being willing to follow our rules.”

Triple S Planning and Zoning Executive Director Ryan Libke explained the sign size allows for a variance request.

“They were allowed to have one [sign] up to fifty square feet, and based on the width of the building and the formula, they could go above that up to a certain number, but they asked for it to be fifty-eight,” he said. “Our regulations state that the maximum of the sign is fifty square feet, but if the formula that we use to calculate the actual size is greater than fifty, then you have to get a variance approved first.”


Zone change approved

Commissioners also approved recommending to the Simpsonville City Commission a zone change request from Agricultural (A) to Limited Interchange (X-1) for 1.6 acres at Buck Creek Road and just south of Interstate 64. The property is owned by Bob and Kitty Walters.

That property is part of a 9.55-acre tract – that the commission also approved a preliminary plat for – that’s located between I-64 and an 80-acre tract that was approved for a second outlet mall last year.

Kerry Magan, the engineer for the project, said the change meets with the comprehensive plan and also cited extensive changes in the area – such as the construction of the outlet mall and the widening of I-64 – criteria that allow a zone change.

The property will be used as a parking lot and retention basin for the commercial development that will consist of 6 lots ranging from 1.23 to 3.09 acres.

Magan said the development could contain a couple of fast food restaurants, a couple of sit-down restaurants, a hotel and possibly a small strip mall center.

He said he could not say at this time what companies would locate there.

Magan said there would be two access points to the development, although their locations have not been finalized.


Also at the meeting, commissioners:

§       Approved an amended plat for Equestrian Lakes, Phase I, Tract 31.

§       Approved a final plat for Heritage Park at Freedom’s Way and Midland Industrial Drive, which will consist of 7 lots zoned C-3 and I-1.

§       Approved an amended plat for Twin Lake Estates, Tract 17A on Conner Station Road.

§       Approved bond releases for Meadow Glen, sections II and III, at $368 and $3,085, respectively.