Gro­cery store re­zon­ing ap­proved

The Covington News - - FRONT PAGE - JACKIE GUTKNECHT jgutknecht@cov­news.com

The City of Cov­ing­ton is set to be the home of one of Europe’s largest gro­cery chains af­ter the Cov­ing­ton City Coun­cil ap­proved the re­zon­ing of 5.5 acres of land on High­way 142 Mon­day night.

Ac­cord­ing to Gro­cery.com, Lidl (pro­nounced lee­dle) is a Ger­man chain of dis­count su­per­mar­kets with 10,000 stores in 27 coun­tries. The stores have a sim­i­lar con­cept to Aldi, an­other Ger­man gro­cery store chain that has made its way into the U.S. 40 years ago.

Lidl has started to make its mark in the U.S. this year, with its first stores sched­uled to open in North Carolina South Carolina, Vir­ginia and New York. Other stores are planned in Texas and Ohio, ac­cord­ing to a Lidl rep­re­sen­ta­tive.

The coun­cil’s unan­i­mous vote to re­zone the High­way 142 land, which is be­tween Trac­tor Sup­ply and Kauf­man Tire, from Heavy In­dus­trial to Cor­ri­dor Mixed Use comes af­ter city plan­ning and zon­ing staff rec­om­mended the zon­ing amend­ment. How­ever, plan­ning and zon­ing staff raised con­cerns about an ad­di­tional curb cut on High­way 142.

The city ap­proved the re­zon- ing with no ad­di­tional notes made about curb cuts. The 5.5-acre site is re­zoned from a 21-acre par­cel and now com­bined with a neigh­bor­ing 5-acre tract that was al­ready zoned Cor­ri­dor Mixed Use.

Plan­ning and Zon­ing Di­rec­tor Scott Gaither said the 35,000-square­foot gro­cery store and po­ten­tial out­parcels is con­sis­tent with the devel­op­ment of nearby prop­er­ties. Cur­rently the land is de­scribed as undis­turbed pine forested prop­erty with ex­ist­ing streams and an ex­ist­ing san­i­tary sewer line ease­ment.

Lidl rep­re­sen­ta­tives said once com­pleted, the gro­cery store will bring 30 jobs to the city.

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