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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE The zoning case and 39-acre preliminary plat for a Menards home improvement store at the corner of Zimmer Avenue and West Sunshine Street will come before the Planning & Zoning Commission at 6:30 p.m., Thursday, April 9 in Council Chambers at Historic City Hall. The proposed store is one of two that the retailer wants to build in Springfield. The other is planned for the northeast corner of Chestnut Expressway at U.S. 65. Menards’ representatives say the project will bring 200 new jobs and $30 million in sales during its first year of operation. At is March 9 meeting, City Council approved annexing 39 acres of private property and six acres of Missouri Department of Transportation and Greene County right-of-way located where the company would like to build at 3705 W. Sunshine into the city of Springfield. The store would be located across from the 96-acre Springfield Plaza development at West Bypass and West Sunshine Street and northwest of a Walmart. Staff recommends approval of the rezoning request as it is in compliance with the growth management and land use component of the City’s Comprehensive Plan. The Comprehensive Plan identifies this as an appropriate area for medium-intensity retail, office or housing uses. This area is also within the potential Activity Center of West Bypass and Sunshine Street as described in the plan. The requested HC (Highway Commercial) zoning is consistent with the recommendation. City staff compiled an in-depth report that included an analysis of the development’s traffic and stormwater impact. Traffic studies
A traffic study was required for this property as part of the rezoning request. The traffic study considered the area in which development-generated traffic is found to have a significant impact on the surrounding street network. Existing traffic counts were performed by the developer to create a baseline for the area. These counts were reviewed and approved by Public Works staff after comparison with the City’s most recent traffic count data for the same roadways. Future trips generated by the site were estimated using Trip Generation manuals published by the Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE). The additional trips generated by the development were distributed on the street network using industry standard practices. The trip distribution used in the traffic study was independently confirmed by Public Works staff. New trips generated by this property at the full development proposed were distributed as follows: • 30% to and from the west on Sunshine Street
• 55% to and from the east on Sunshine Street
• 3% to and from Farm Road 148
• 2% to and from Farm Road 129
• 10% to and from the commercial development to the south of Sunshine Street. The traffic study showed the need for improvements at the intersection of Sunshine Street and Farm Road 129/Zimmer Avenue, the extension of McCurry Street north of Sunshine Street, and additional turn lanes at the intersection of Farm Road 148 and Farm Road 129 created by the relocation of Farm Road 148. Per the City's request, Menards has agreed to build a new road on the proposed west side site. The new road will re-route Farm Road 148 to Farm Road 129. There are also plans to widen Farm Road 129 and install turn lanes where it intersects with Sunshine. “The additional traffic north of this development on Farm Road 129 is not expected to be significant and will not result in a decreased level of service for the roadway,” said Martin Gugel, Assistant Director of Public Works and traffic engineer. “Therefore, Public Works staff believes that with these improvements, the roadway system will continue to operate at an acceptable level, similar to the level experienced on the street network today.” Stormwater studies
City regulations require stormwater runoff from the site be discharged into a public right-of-way, certified waterway or drainage easement at a rate not exceeding the pre-development peak rate. Runoff drains from the Menards site at two locations. About half the site drains to the west, through an existing mobile home park and about half from the northeast corner of the site to right-of-way for Greene County Farm Road 129 /Zimmer Avenue. “Existing development will make it very difficult to obtain a drainage easement through the mobile home park to the west. Menards thus proposed to direct all the runoff from the site to drain from the northeast corner into the right-of-way of Farm Road 129,” explained stormwater engineer Todd Wagner. According to Wagner, existing ditches along Farm Road 129 are not adequate to convey this amount of runoff; therefore, the developer is required to provide downstream drainage improvements north of the site. A drainage easement must be obtained by Menards from the adjoining property to the north to construct these improvements. The exact location of the improvements and easement is not yet known and is being negotiated between Menards and the property owner. Regardless of the exact location, the improvements will extend to an existing drainage easement in Stonehinge subdivision to the north. Final design and approval by the City will depend on the outcome of these discussions. These issues must be resolved prior to issuance of any development permits. Community input process
A neighborhood meeting to discuss the rezoning with Menards was held Dec. 1, 2014. Approximately 24 people attended. “The neighborhood meeting is the first step in the process for adjacent property owners to see what is being proposed,” says Principal City Planner Bob Hosmer. Anyone wishing to speak at the April 9 meeting should fill out a speaker’s card and submit it to City staff at the meeting. For more information, please contact Cora Scott, City of Springfield director of Public Information & Civic Engagement, at 417-864-1009 or 417-380-3352 or firstname.lastname@example.org.View map.