Weingarten's New Development Proposal

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Last summer College Station residents gathered in a public meeting to voice their concerns about a proposed development project. Weingarten Realty Investors wanted to build a Wal-Mart Supercenter and other commercial businesses on 50 acres they control off Rock Prairie and Highways 6.

But after a lot of complaints from residents about the impact the project would have on the area, the realty company decided to drop the plan. Now they are proposing a new project.

The realty group now wants to develop smaller commercial businesses on only 16 acres in the same area. However, this new proposal could meet those same complaints from residents who live near the development location.

Lance Simms is the acting director of Planning and Development Services for the city of College Station. He said according to the city's staff report the location in question is a good area for heavy commercial retail use.

In order to build, Weingarten needs the 16 acres to be rezoned from agriculture to commercial use. Before that can happen, public meetings will be held so city officials and residents can readdress neighborhood concerns.

One concern being, residents and city officials do not know for sure what will be built on the property. Chuck Ellison, is the attorney for the developers.

He said the developer can not tell them because they do not have a committed user for the space yet. Whom ever comes in though, Lance Simms said they will follow the city's Comprehensive Plan, thanks to safe guards in place.

"If the rezoning is successful then we have other processes in place," Simms said. "(There will be a) site planning review (and a) building plan review (conducted) to make sure they comply with the city's ordinances."

Residents will be able to address city officials tomorrow about Weingarten's new plan at a public meeting. That meeting will be held at Our Savior's Lutheran Church on Woodcreek Drive at 7 pm.