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Councilman rejects recommendation of panel for QuikTrip rezoning request

County Councilman John Campisi, R-south county, recently kept legislation granting a rezoning request to build a QuikTrip on Telegraph Road from being drafted — rejecting a unanimous Planning Commission recommendation.

QuikTrip is seeking a zoning change so it can build a 4,555-square-foot 24-hour convenience store with nine gas pumps on Telegraph Road, 550 feet south of Forder Road in Oakville. QuikTrip has requested a zoning change to the C-8 Planned Commercial District and Amended C-8 Planned Commercial District from the 10,000-square-foot R-3 Residence District and C-8 Planned Commercial District for a 2.02-acre site on the west side of Telegraph Road.

The Planning Commission recommended approval of the request two weeks ago, finding that the proposal was land-use appropriate, but Campisi only moved to receive and file the commission's report during the Jan. 13 County Council meeting. Unless Campisi directs the appropriate legislation be drafted permitting the zoning change within 90 days from that meeting, councilmen will not even consider the request — essentially killing QuikTrip's proposal.

"Sometimes I just don't see eye to eye with the Planning Commission," Campisi told the Call.

"I have concerns with the elevation, the fact that it's right in the middle of a block," he said noting that the proposed site also was near a dangerous intersection.

The proposed site on Telegraph would be higher than the property that is adjacent to the north and to the west of the site, according to commission documents. Representatives from QuikTrip said the site would be lowered during a public hearing, but the documents indicate the commission noted that the lighting had to be shielded to avoid a disturbance on adjacent property and it recommended that a light study be conducted as a condition of project approval.

"I needed time to go through that information ...," Campisi said. "I'm still doing more research, but I'm not really going to do anything with it. Something like 1,170 people didn't want it — it's pretty much dead."

He said no members of the community contacted him, but Department of Planning documents note that 1,170 people signed petitions opposing the request, while 52 signatures appeared on petitions supporting the request. The department also received 349 letters of opposition, while 18 letters of support were sent.

About 30 people attended a public hearing in November on the proposal. During that meeting, 20 citizens raised their hands indicating they opposed QuikTrip's proposal and 10 people raised their hands in support.

"The speakers in opposition expressed concerns regarding traffic safety, especially for patrons wishing to turn left out of this site to travel north," according to planning department documents dated Jan. 6.

Campisi opposed a similar proposal in March 2001 made by QuikTrip Corp. to build a store at a different location on Telegraph Road.

The corporation submitted a proposal in 2001 to rezone a residential district to commercial for a 3.17-acre site on the east side of Telegraph about 250 feet south of Martigney Drive, which was the former location of Katydids Garden Shop at 4416 Telegraph.

Despite the Planning Commission's 5-1 recommendation for the request, Campisi opposed the request, citing strong public opposition. Four neighborhood groups had circulated petitions, contending that a 24-hour convenience store would have been too intrusive at the proposed site.

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