Demolition starts at future dollar store siteMarch 1, 2018
By CANDY NEAL
HUNTINGBURG — Demolition has started on old homes near U.S. 231 and First Street, to make way for a new Dollar General store on the city’s south side.
The timeline for the store’s construction has not been announced. But the demolition of the four homes started this week. The city building permit for the project was issued last week, City Planning Director Paul Lake said this morning.
The planned 9,100-square-foot store is comparable to the Dollar General on the north side of Ferdinand. It will be located at 317 E. First St. in Huntingburg, which is catty-corner from the Mor For Less grocery store.
While discussing the project with city officials this past fall, project developer Curt Rafferty was looking to get permission from the Indiana Department of Transportation to have an access point to the store’s lot from U.S. 231. That permission has been given, though the permit has not yet been received, the project engineer, Will McDonough, said this morning.
Lake mentioned that the area already has an existing entry through the former homes’ driveway. Of the four houses Rafferty has purchased for the project, two have access points from U.S. 231.
Rafferty could not be reached for comment this morning.
Rafferty, of Bowling Green, Kentucky, and McDonough, of Corydon-based Paul Primavera and Associates, explained to the Huntingburg Plan Commission in September that the new store would sit back from the corner and have about 25 parking spaces in front.
The commission recommended to the Huntingburg Common Council changing the property’s zoning from residential to light commercial, which the council did in October.
At that time, city officials heard numerous comments and concerns about having a second Dollar General in the city. Those concerns were about traffic in the area, removing houses since there is a need for residences in the city, and the possibility that the store could cause the closure of the other Dollar General on the north side of town or the Family Dollar located in the city’s center. People also said that other properties along U.S. 231 are already commercial and that those could be used instead.
Council members agreed with the planning commission that they should not dictate whether a store would have an effect on another business. They all agreed that the zoning change was an appropriate use of the property, since the land sits along the city’s economic corridor.
At the time of the decision, McDonough and Rafferty said there were no plans to shut down the store on the north side.
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