The La Plata Planning Commission voted on Tuesday to approve a major plan for a vacant property on the north side of La Plata Plaza off Shining Willow Way, which will be the new home of the city's Five Guys restaurant.
The developer Phillips Edison & Company is proposing to build a 4500-square-foot single-storey building and provide 14 additional parking spaces around it.
Once completed, the building will be the new home of Five Guys restaurant currently located in Rosewick Crossing. The restaurant will occupy a portion of 2,500 square feet of the building. The remaining 1,900 square meters will be configured as a retail space. The building will also be equipped with a small "master bedroom".
The planning commission has approved a parking allowance for the project because the project does not meet the parking requirements in the city code, which requires a minimum of one space for every 100 square feet for restaurants and for every 200 square feet of commercial space .
Phillips Edison's representative, Quinn Gadow, explained to the commission that visitors would be able to use the parking lots adjacent to the Panera restaurant and those in the rest of the mall's parking lot.
Gadow accepted the planning committee's request for the inclusion of an additional ADA-compliant parking space in addition to the proposed one. The commissioners have argued that each of the two companies in the building should have their own ADA spaces.
Planning committee member Evalyne Bryant-Ward expressed concern over the number of free properties at Rosewick Crossing, which would increase when the Five Guys restaurant leaves. Gadow, whose company also runs Rosewick Crossing, said the company is actively working to fill these vacancies and is confident of finding new tenants.
Gadow said the company was expecting to move forward quickly with the construction once the project was approved.
"We're pretty excited about this," Gadow said.
Phillips Edison will project an electric transformer and plant several trees to shade the parking lot. The developer has also provided updated plans for the screening of equipment on the roof and the landscape of the site, and the transfer of light poles and trees away from the storm water facilities.
Rather than installing a buried propane tank on the site, the developer will use an underground propane tank already present on the site.
During the Tuesday session, the planning committee also approved the definitive boundary maps, or plats, for three sections of the development of Agricopia located west of the intersection of the streets of La Plata and Radio Station.
The commission approved the plats for a total of 62 lots in the three sections for a total of just over five acres.
Councilor Matt Simpson, who sits on the planning committee, has withdrawn from the votes on the proposals of Agricopia because he is also the lawyer of the Association of the owners of the house Agricopia.
In other affairs, Jeanine Harrington, the director of city planning, has also revised the proposed schedule for the completion of the city's 2019 global plan, which is scheduled for completion and adoption by the end of the year .
The city held four listening sessions to get public contributions on what the global plan should include. At the start of the day, the city council met to approve the recruitment of the SABRA & Associates consulting firm to work with the city to prepare the plan.
Harrington briefed the commission on upcoming projects that will arrive before the planning committee in the near future, including plans for the Steeplechase Villages off the Buckeye Circle south of the center of La Plata. Harrington will also provide updates on a site plan for a property on Cannery Road, roadway improvement plans for Heritage Green Parkway and a revised entry plan for the Sonic restaurant in the US 301 and Port Tobacco Road.
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