Developer Lance Osborne’s proposed mega GetGo development isn’t the only thing happening in the city.
NEW GODDARD SCHOOLS FACILITY OPENING NEXT YEAR
The national economic downturn resulted in an abrupt halt to construction of a planned daycare facility on Miner Road a few years ago. Since then, the property has been sitting empty.
That’s about to change.
The Goddard Schools---a national for-profit chain of academic-based daycare/pre-schools---has just received site plan approval for a new facility on that site. The projected construction cost: $2 million.
Company representatives said that they look quite carefully before selecting new locations----a clear indication that they think Highland Heights will be a good place to do business.
At a July 9th public hearing, several Miner Road residents offered these comments:
There is lots of traffic on Miner Road. The street is narrow. This will bring a lot of people in. It’s already hard to make left hand turns. Safety, I’m concerned about that.
What kind of revenue will this bring to the city? … I’m concerned about traffic in front of our houses. Miner Road needs to be widened. Will this bring more pedophiles into the neighborhood?
Planning & Zoning Commission (P&Z) Chairman Vince Adamus explained:
Potential revenue is not relevant to the planning commission. Our duty is to look at the site plan. We are not here to judge revenue per se. They (the Goddard Schools) are not a nonprofit agency. They will pay property tax. They will have 25 staff members, so there will be income tax. Our job is to judge the type of use and decide: Does it conform to our zoning? This is a private property transaction. …
This is a facility that will be staffed 100% of the time. The children will be led into the building by their parents. It will be fenced where the kids play…
It’s conceivable to put a 30,000 sq foot office building there…Conceivably you could have 120 employees working there. That would mean more trips in that scenario.
The Goddard Schools franchise is scheduled to open in the summer of 2013.
It will serve approximately 140 children between the ages of 6 weeks and 6 years and employ between 20 and 25 (full and part-time) staff members.
COUNCIL ACTS TO PUT MEGA GET-GO ZONING ISSUE ON THE BALLOT
Council passed required mega GetGo-related legislation before adjourning for its annual August recess.
At its July 24th meeting, Council adopted a resolution authorizing the mayor to sign a development agreement with developer Lance Osborne.
It also enacted Ordinance 14-2012, which rezones the front part of the Catalano’s property to a Motor Service District—a necessary precursor to installing a mega GetGo gas station.
Residents will be asked to approve—or reject—that Ordinance in November.
Council's vote was not unanimous.
Ward 4 Councilmember Lisa Stickan voted against both the zoning Ordinance and the development agreement Resolution.
Council-at-Large Representative Ed Hargate voted for the Ordinance but against the Resolution.
Council President Cathy Murphy explained her vote for both pieces of GetGo legislation, saying:
I want to be clear that it is Giant Eagle and the developer, Mr. Osborne, proposing the GetGo, not Council. A “Yes” vote (by Council) is not an overt or tacit endorsement of the project. It is an indication that we’ve done our due diligence. We have put together the best proposal and ballot language possible.
Mayor Scott Coleman went farther, expressing his support for the GetGo project:
We have come a long way with this project. We have addressed most of residents’ concerns. Residents have the right to speak. I will be signing it (the mega GetGo development agreement).
Councilwoman Lisa Stickan disagreed that residents’ concerns about the proposed mega GetGo project had been fully and adequately addressed. She said:
Ultimately the decision about the project will rest with voters in the city. Once they speak I will honor that result. As the representative of Ward 4, however, at this time there are too many concerns within the ward for me to vote yes …. I feel I need to honor their (her Ward 4 constituents’) wishes.
As is typical for him, Councilman Ed Hargate declined to state on the record, during the Council meeting, why he voted for the zoning Ordinance but against the development agreement.
Patch.com quoted Hargate as stating, after the meeting, that he believed that a planning expert should have participated in the process and that he questioned how much of an economic benefit the mega GetGo development---“a gas station bringing minimum wage jobs”--would really provide to the city.
DETAILS OF THE GETGO DEVELOPMENT AGREEMENT: THE ZONING ISSUE
There’s alot in the development agreement---much too much to cover in a single blog posting.
So let’s start at the beginning.
This is the text of the zoning issue that Highland Heights residents will see on the November ballot:
Shall Ordinance No. 14-2012, which revises the Zone Map of the City of Highland Heights, Ohio by rezoning Permanent parcel No. 822-27-021, comprising approximately 1.643 acres of land at the corner of Wilson Mills and Brainard Roads as the same is more fully described in Ordinance No. 14-2012 and subject to the Brainard Crossing GetGo Develelopment Agreement entered into between the City, Osborne Capital Group, LLC and Brainard Crossing Holdings, LLC, from Local Business District (L)B) to Motor Service District (M-s) be enacted into law?
Let me bottom line it for you. Here’s all you need to know:
A YES vote is a vote FOR Osborne’s mega GetGo development.
A NO vote is a vote AGAINST it.