Oregon Planning Commission OKs preliminary plan for Plaza

Kelly J. Kaczala

        The Oregon Planning Commission on April 19 approved a preliminary plan approval for the Freeway Plaza on Navarre Avenue.
        Plans call for the division of the property into two parcels and allow Hollydale Road access up to the eastern property line, according to Ron Kahle, who represents the owners.
        “They are going to demolish approximately the southern half of the building and have the new tenant on the front portion on Navarre,” said Kahle. “On the southern part of the property would be a new restaurant pad. They will retain the remains of the existing building on the northern portion, reconnecting the utilities and so forth.”
        Chairman Rick Orovitz said the property was the old Freeway Restaurant. He asked if the dividing line would stop at a laundromat on the property.
        Kahle said it would not. The laundromat is going to get relocated into the northern part of the building and the dividing line is just after the laundromat.
        “So the Laundromat, as it stands right now, would be a part of the building that is being removed,” said Kahle.
        Orovitz asked if there were plans to demolish and revitalize the section of the existing building that was going to remain in place for now.
        Kahle said they plan to renovate that portion of the building and relocate the existing coin laundry into that renovated portion of the building.
        “No expansion, just renovation?” asked Orovitz.
        “Not at this time,” said Kahle.
        Edward Ross, of Luverne Avenue, expressed concerns about loitering and windblown garbage.
        “In December, I had called Oregon Police three days in a row. There were homeless people. I have a teenage daughter. There was a gentleman out there urinating at 7 a.m. There are kids who get on a school bus in that area. I’m a concerned citizen because I live there. It’s in my backyard,” said Ross. “There are rodents in our yard. They are not taking care of their property at all. It took the Oregon Police Department three days to contact the owner of the property.”
        Kahle said they plan to increase the parking lot lighting levels to help deter loitering.
        “I want to be very cautious about the light we have. I don’t want to be spilling light onto your property,” said Kahle.
        He said the owner is also aware of the garbage situation and have a company under contract to come out every 10 days to police the windblown garbage and make sure it is in the Dumpster.
        “We can see to it that the police do more passes through that area and try and help,” said Mayor Mike Seferian, who has a seat on the Planning Commission.
        Nichole Vangelder asked if there were any plans for a walking/bike trail or landscaping to beautify that area.
         Seferian said there were no plans for a bike trail to go in that area. However, they do have trails that will be incorporated in the next phase that will go to the town center on the opposite side of the street.
        Deputy Engineer Rodney Shultz said there was a sidewalk along the north side of Hollydale that will be extended and will provide pedestrian access to the area. Also, with the redevelopment of the parcel in the front, there were plans that have been submitted and under review. Currently, 100 percent of the property is asphalt. The new site will have more green space than the old site. There will be landscaping because it is required by the municipal code. Also, the storm sewer will be upgraded from Hollydale south to Navarre Avenue.
        Seferian moved to accept the preliminary plat for the Freeway Plaza. Approval was granted by a vote of 3-0.


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