VANDALIA — The Vandalia City Council approved a pair of variances that clear hurdles that will allow a new Shell store and gas station at the corner of National and Helke Roads.
True North Energy, doing business as the True North Shell station, will buy the abandoned Friendly’s restaurant location and build a larger, 4,200 square foot store that would span both lots.
City Council voted 6-1, with Council Member Candice Farst voting against, to approve a variance to the City Code that requires a gas station to be a minimum of 200 feet from residential housing. The motion also approved a second variance that allows a third curb cut on a corner lot.
Video of the meeting can be seen here:
The existing store is currently within 150 feet of residential property, but the closest gasoline dispenser is 209 feet from residences. The new store would reduce that to 203 feet.
The third curb cut will allow for better traffic flow into and out of the lot. One opening would remain on Helke Road and the other two will be on National Road.
“Without a variance, no redevelopment of the True North site is possible,” wrote Rick Turner of Diamond Z Engineering in the application for the variance.
“I want to thank True North Shell for wanting to better the property,” said Council Member Mike Blakesly. “I think this is a good use of this property.”
Council also approved a resolution to purchase a condenser coil for one of the rooftop air conditioning units at the Recreation Center. The measure waived the normal bidding process and awarded the contract to Mechanical Systems of Dayton who submitted the lowest of two quotes at $17,275.
“With springtime and spring weather rapidly approaching, it is necessary to replace this unit as quickly as possible due to cooling and humidity issues currently being experienced at the Rec Center,” said City Manager Jon Crusey in his weekly letter to council.
Crusey recommended that bidding be waived due to the “urgent nature of the repairs.”
Other items approved by council included:
- The purchase of seven mobile radios for the Division of Fire from P&R Communications for $25,493.44 as part of the department’s conversion to radios compatible with the statewide MARCS radio system. Montgomery County is expected to move to that system in July.
- The purchase of four used radios for the Divison of Fire from Butler Township at a cost of $10,000. The radios were declared surplus by the township fire department.
- Awarded the bid for the Westhafer Road water main replacement project to GM Pipeline, Inc. at a cost of $191,885.61.
- Awarded the bid for removal and replacement of curbs and sidewalks to T.C. Holzen, Inc. at a price of $138,417.50.
- Authorized the city manager to enter into an agreement with the Montgomery County Board of Commissioners for a 24-hour stray cat program for the boarding and disposal of stray cats delivered to the Animal Resource Center by city residents at a cost of $60 per cat. The adoption credit of $15 has been removed in order to achieve a higher live release rate through reduced adoption fees.
- Awarded a bid for police vehicle maintenance to Grismer Tire & Auto for a two year contract at a cost not to exceed the department’s annual appropriation amount which is $23,500 for 2016. Grismer was the lowest of five bidders on the department’s most common services.
- Approved an ordinance in its second reading that rezoned properties at 131, 139, and 209 S. Dixie (Morton & Whetstone Funeral Home and residences) to Office/Residential with a planned unit development overlay and re-platted 1.164 acres of land. The property is currently legal non-conforming to its Residential Multi-Family zoning. The rezoning will bring it into conformance with the Zoning Code and allow Morton & Whetstone to expand parking by 23-30 places. The re-zoning was unanimously recommended for approval by the Planning Commission at its January 12 meeting.
- Approved a variance at 2231 Settlers Trail for a fence height variance for a two-foot section of fence and a variance to allow the fence to not extend all the way to the ground to allow for drainage underneath it.
- Approved a variance that, after working with city staff, developed a landscape plan for the Johnson Electric site at 801 Scholz Dr. The site is currently undergoing an expansion of over 13,000 square feet. The agreement with staff states that Johnson Electric will effectively landscape the perimeter of the parking area facing I-75 by October 1, 2017 or as part of a future building/parking expansion, whichever comes first. The company has submitted a letter of credit as surety that the work will be performed in an amount of $50,000.
The council adjourned to an executive session after the meeting to discuss the performance evaluation of Crusey.
The Vandalia City Council will hold its next regular meeting on Monday, April 4 at 7 p.m. A work session will be held prior to the meeting at a time to be announced.