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Planners approve applications for Bailey’s Center renovations

By Staff | Jun 22, 2011

A discussion on permit applications at the Bailey’s Shopping Center, which began during the April 26 Planning Commission meeting, was brought back before the seven-member panel last week, ending with a compromise reached between members of the city’s Planning Department staff and representatives for the longtime island retailer.

Since their initial public hearing almost two months ago, architect Ray Fenton, representing Bailey’s, has continued work on applications submitted for a conditional use permit to allow for the continued use and after-the-fact expansion of a coffee bar business inside the grocery store as well as a development permit amending the Master Development Plan of the Planned Unit Development (PUD) for Bailey’s Shopping Center, allowing proposed and after-the-fact site improvements and revisions to the parking lot.

On June 14, Fenton and Roy Gibson, representing the Planning Department, announced that both sides had reconciled several issues associated with their applications. According to the staff report, Fenton withdrew a request to amend the city’s Land Development Code standard for the 200-foot driveway separation from the intersection of Periwinkle Way and Tarpon Bay Road, having presented a plan to alter their ingress/egress.

A compromise was also reached to reduce the number of parking spaces required at the site from 321 to 275. By making a few minor changes to the parking area surrounding the restaurant — George & Wendy’s Corner Grill — on the corner of the parcel, a new total of 281 parking spaces has been proposed.

Commissioners voted 7-0 to accept both permit applications, A closed public hearing on the matter will take place next week.

In addition, Gibson stated that staff has no objection to the restaurant owners requesting an amendment for outdoor bonus seating, providing that the existing landscape buffer is maintained and the setback requirement of 66 feet (from Tarpon Bay Road) and 75 feet (from Periwinkle Way) is met.

At the meeting in April, a plan to provide up to 16 seats underneath the restaurants’ front alcove was proposed.

In other business, planners approved issuing a certificate of appropriateness for the construction of a new rest area along Sanibel’s shared use path, as well as support facilities, on the historic Rutland homesite.

Among the proposed amenities are a gazebo-type shelter with maps and informational placards, paved and gravel or shell paths, including a loop from the shared use path, benches, bicycle racks and a water fountain.

“Any improvements in the vicinity of the Rutland graves shall not create an undue attraction, and shall seek to both honor and respect the grave site and provide an opportunity for site visitors to learn about and connect to Sanibel’s pioneer past,” the staff report reads, in part. “The site should be kept close to its existing state, and improvements should be limited to the minimum necessary to accomplish the above stated purpose.”

Also, no outdoor lighting at the rest area will be allowed.