Archive for Thursday, April 8, 2010

Dollar General breaks ground on new Basehor location

Crews broke ground recently on a new Dollar General being built in Basehor.

Crews broke ground recently on a new Dollar General being built in Basehor.

April 8, 2010

A nationally known business is making its way to Basehor.

By the middle of this summer, 155th Street, between the post office and American Family Insurance, will be the location of a new Dollar General store.

Negotiations with Dollar General and the city began around December 2009 when the company requested a change in the city’s sprinkler codes to better accommodate its business. The Basehor City Council approved this change at its Dec. 21 meeting, giving the city an advantage in acquiring the new business.

Ground broke on the project in March, and Basehor officials are extremely happy, said City Administrator Mark Loughry.

“We’re really excited,” Loughry said. “Any economic development at this time is good economic development. It’s a nationwide, established chain, and we really hope it’s successful. We think it will be.”

One of the key benefits to the store will be its location, Loughry said.

“It’s a great location,” he said. “It’s downtown, within walking distance to many people. We just couldn’t be more excited about the project and the location.”

But not everyone shares this exact enthusiasm about the store. At Tuesday night’s Basehor Planning Commission meeting, commissioners approved a request by Dollar General to separate its current lot on 155th Street into two lots: one .95 acres and one 1.05 acres. The full lot, which was in the past split in two parts, has already been zoned as commercial 1 and is part of phase one of the Crestwood Country Estates property. Planning commissioners were upset this was the first time they had been presented with any aspect of the project, saying they should have been consulted before ground was broken.

City Engineer Mitch Pleak told the commission because the area had previously been platted and zoned, it wasn’t completely necessary for the planning commission to look at the plans before construction. Pleak also said upon the commission approving the lot split, the city council would have to approve a rule of exception that would allow the same lot to be split twice.

In addition to not being consulted on the project, some commissioners expressed concern about the style of Dollar General buildings, saying the business would not fit in nicely with Basehor’s downtown look.

“I went up to Lansing and looked at (the Lansing Dollar General), and I just can’t imagine having that big yellow, black and red sign sitting right out there,” commissioner Ed Bush said. “We’re really going to have to rely on the city staff that hopefully they will guide this for the community.”

The lot split passed with the planning commission Tuesday night, 5-2 with commissioners Bush and Russell Jacobson opposed, and will now be brought to the city council for approval.

Also on Tuesday night, the planning commission,

• Conducted a work session on the city’s architectural standards. The commission will have another workshop on the topic separate from a regular meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 20, at Basehor City Hall.

• Heard a report from Pleak that the Basehor-Linwood School District was nearly ready to begin platting the property for its health and wellness facility.

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