ANGOLA — A primary plat was given contingent approval for a development at 135 E. and 155 E. Wendell Jacob Ave. for a new retail development that will be home to a T.J. Maxx by the Angola Plan Commission.
As far as city documents show, the area has never been platted.
However, the commission and petitioner, Kris Krstovski of K2 Retail Angola LLC chose to continue discussion on the development plan at the September commission meeting after some concerns were brought to light about traffic in and out of the development.
The plan is to have a primary entry for the store off the private drive owned by Menards that comes off Wendell Jacob Avenue. There would also be an entrance off North Wayne Street and another right in/right out entrance on Wendell Jacob Avenue for the property.
When going through the findings of fact on the development plan, three commission members said the plan does cause a hazard for drivers on existing or proposed streets or at points of access.
Another member abstained from the vote and, because there was no majority vote as two members were absent, the development plan could not pass.
All findings of fact have to be in the affirmative for a case to pass so once the finding was voted in the negative, the case could not pass.
City Attorney Kim Shoup said city ordinances allow the meeting to be adjourned and continued at a later time should the board so choose and the petitioner agreed.
“Should the board desire to postpone, that would be a lawful thing to do,” Shoup said. “The petitioner could present on the traffic issues at that time.”
One of the contingencies for the primary plat includes having copies of the Indiana Department of Transportation permits for the driveway along North Wayne Street.
Another contingency involves a drainage agreement, as the detention pond in the area belongs to Menards.
The original paperwork submitted for the plat was a three-lot plat, which included platting the drainage pond.
Project Engineer Todd Bauer with ForeSight Consulting, Angola, said the plan has changed since paperwork was submitted and the new plan is for a two-lot plat, as Menards does not want the drainage pond platted with the new property.
“The preferred layout would be the two-lot plat,” Bauer said. “Lot one won’t change at all. Lot two is the same, primarily the Menards parcel. Lot three completely disappears and stays within Menards ownership.”
Bauer said Menards has expressed permissions for his client, Krstovski, to use the pond for stormwater detention “as long as we can prove it works.”
“It’s still part of our system and we will still use it as our stormwater drainage but it will stay as Menards property,” Bauer said.
As of Monday, Menards had signed a purchase agreement that spoke about drainage, but Menards had not yet approved final plans provided from Bauer and Krstovski.
City Engineer Amanda Cope expressed concern over the drainage.
“In my opinion, nothing is legally signed and set that says stormwater will be in lot three,” Cope said.
Krstovski said there is a signed purchase agreement that, when he is able to close on the property, will give him the right to shared detention.
“Menards is 100% on board and wants the development to happen,” Krstovski said.
Cope said her concern is that Menards has not officially approved it yet.
“In my opinion, approving this contingent on another party is about like putting the cart before the horse,” she said.
Despite the contingencies, the primary plat received contingent approval with only Commission Member Chuck Sheets voting no.
“It’s a poor showing on the city to approve without having everything,” Sheets said, defending his position.
The development plan will be on the agenda for the Sept. 9 meeting of the Angola Plan Commission, which begins at 5 p.m. at City Hall.