Archive for Thursday, October 2, 2003

New commercial area to go before Planning Commission

October 2, 2003

Next week, the Basehor Planning Commission will get its first look at the city's newest commercial and retail area, the Zarda Center, located on Kansas Highway 7, north of Leavenworth Road.

Developers Tom and Ben Zarda, the principal force behind Shawnee Crossings, a commercial and retail development at the southeast corner of Shawnee Mission Parkway and Kansas Highway 7, are seeking approval for their preliminary development plat of the Zarda Center.

The Zarda Center is an 80-acre tract just east of the Falcon Lakes development.

The preliminary development plat indicates the land will house commercial and retail development as well as office space, restaurants, a convenience store and possibly a hotel and bank. The development will be constructed in phases, city officials said.

In city circles, commercial and retail use has been viewed as the best alternative for the land.

"With the highway right there, that piece of ground has always been slated for these kind of uses," said Mike Hooper, city codes administrator.

Overall, 33 buildings are planned for the development. So far, the developers have made no announcements regarding prospective tenants.

The Basehor City Council recently annexed the property. City officials say they view the potential development as a complement to Falcon Lakes as well as Basehor.

Curiously, the preliminary plat indicates traffic will flow into the Zarda Center from K-7 using Falcon Lakes Parkway, an access road built by Falcon Lakes. That road, built at a cost of $1.4 million, was ordered closed by the Kansas Department of Transportation because of safety concerns.

Both Falcon Lakes and Zarda Center representatives said reopening the road is a prime concern; the road allows for easier access from the highway, which both developments seek.

Hooper said developers and the city are working with the state transportation department to find a solution to the Falcon Lakes Parkway dilemma.

Although the plans shows access into the Zarda Center to Falcon Lakes Parkway, the plat also indicates a frontage road will be built allowing access from K-7 onto either Hollingsworth or Donohoo roads, into the commercial and retail area.

There has been no timetable given for the completion of the property.

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