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GetGo Gas Station Gets Approved

Lakewood Architectural Board of Review gives the green light to 16-pump gas station — despite dozens of neighboring residents who oppose the project.

It looks is coming to the southwest corner of Detroit Avenue and Bunts Road.

But not everyone is happy about it.

Dozens of residents attended the city’s architectural board meeting Thursday evening, as the board OK’d Giant Eagle’s plan to build a new GetGo gas station at the property it once owned. 

But the proposal that was early last month, looks a bit different than the plan that was OK’d on Thursday.

Some of the neighbors took issue with the possibility of an environmental impact — and their property values — while others were concerned with noise, fumes and loitering.

“We don’t think this was a good idea, pardon the pun, from the get-go,” said Dennis Pehotsky, who lives one home to the south of the proposed project.

Other chimed in.

“Giant Eagle is not being a good neighbor,” said , who lives on Bunts Road. “We’re good neighbors to each other, we look out for each other. (Giant Eagle) is not looking out for us.”

Last month, the city encouraged the Pittsburgh-grocer to make some alterations to its plans, including changes to the landscaping and the addition of green space.

Pat Avolio, the director of real estate development for , said that he doesn’t expect an increase in traffic — even though some residents disputed that.

“Gas stations are typically not destinations,” he said, trying to answer concerns from neighboring residents. “(Motorists) are already on the road.”

As part of Thursday’s approval, the board also required Giant Eagle to make other changes including planting a few deciduous trees to block the neighbors’ view of the property.

The new drawing also boasts brick piers with iron fencing and landscaping tucked inside.

“I really appreciate (Giant Eagle) working with us on this project and they way it’s developed,” said board member Michael Fleenor. “Initially, I wasn’t very excited about having a gas station here but I am getting really excited about it.” 

at the busy intersection of Bunts Road and Detroit Avenue highlight a 5,600-square-foot brick building, with eight fueling stations (16 pumps).

The GetGo station — unlike the company’s typical gas station — will offer some grocery items, prepared foods, a patio and a Wi-Fi café.

The site will also feature bio-retention landscaping, helping to alleviate the city’s storm water management issues, a move lauded by city officials.

Giant Eagle sold its property across the street at 14013 Detroit Avenue to Urban Active in 2007. However, plans at the site to build a workout facility never came to fruition.

The building has been vacant since 2007, when Giant Eagle finished its move across the street to 14100 Detroit Avenue.

Officials said demolition of the existing vacant structure — a grocery store that’s gone by a few names in its history — could begin by June. Construction could be completed by the holidays.

The original Bill April 13, 2012 at 11:28 AM
I can't wait to start filling up at such an attractive station. This will be such an improvement over the existing one at Manor Park.
Stacy C. April 13, 2012 at 12:17 PM
Finally...that building has been vacant for so long and looks so run down. I think this looks and sounds great. It is so refreshing to finally see Lakewood developing and changing for the better so quickly. Lakewood was really starting to look run down and people were really starting to leave our city. I now see that all the new development is bringing people back into Lakewood...maybe not to live but to spend money and help our city.
Rick Uldricks April 13, 2012 at 12:20 PM
Goodnight Moon's Food Store http://lakewood-oh.patch.com/listings/moons-food-store-3
Evan Hammersmith April 13, 2012 at 12:39 PM
Moon's is a dumpy store. While I dont want it to go under, they'll probably need to clean it up. Secondly, GE prices will not be lower than Moon's, so I dont expect them to be undercut. Keep in mind, they're already NEXT TO a big grocery store and they manage to stay in business. I dont see a gas station putting the nail in the coffin. I could be wrong.
Kevin Butler April 13, 2012 at 12:39 PM
A gas station is a permitted use in a commercially zoned area in Lakewood. The Architectural Board of Review does not approve plans to build things that are permitted uses; it approves the design of things to be lawfully built. Thus, the board vote last night does not represent an OK for a gas station to be built in Lakewood. It represents an approval of the design of and materials used in the construction of whatever gas station is to be built. The point, while a fine one, should be made clear on ABR's behalf.
Tfacey April 13, 2012 at 12:48 PM
Thats not food.
Michael Rice April 13, 2012 at 02:18 PM
As I mentioned in a previous article, the City of Lakewood, including the Mayor, City Council, and the city’s architectural board already unofficially approved this project months ago and had to put on their 'dog and pony show' for residents. Remember, it's you as residents of Lakewood who voted for these people and if you don't like what they do, then get someone else on office who will. I am for new and renovated development in Lakewood, but I also believe the people should have a say of what happens in their neighborhoods.
David Connor April 13, 2012 at 03:16 PM
I think this should be a modern and attractive substitute for the hulk of the old store, as well as an improvement on the Manor Park site. I want to repeat my suggestions that there be no access to the station from Parkhaven Row at all (expected GE to fight that for fuel track access). As well, the Parkhaven residents, especially those closest to the site, should be given ironclad, written agreements about the size of setback and sight barriers. Finally the lighting should be recessed and muted enough so that the station isn't confused for Hopkins International (no kidding, some place as just too bright).
Hol April 13, 2012 at 03:21 PM
Although the plans were approved with conditions last night, there are still ways to work with Giant Eagle to insure that it fits within the neighborhood. They still need a variance for the fence height, if we flood the city with letters and calls requesting the fence height mirror that of the other fences in the city, it may happen. We cannot stop the development from moving forward, but we can make the necessary changes to help keep the neighborhood safe. EX: The hospital has a 13' fence to help shield the surrounding neighbors from noise, pollution, etc. We can make that happen. But complaining will not help. We have to take action. Get Involved. Let’s make sure the proper steps are taken with respect to the fence and the new landscaping. Using the existing landscaping and the proposed 8' fence is not sufficient. Let's all work together city of Lakewood to make this happen. I am very concerned about this factor since my home backs up to the parking lot and there are currently no trees or shurbs providing any kind of privacy. The current plans states they will use exsiting shrubs...not acceptable. (see pictures uploaded) If our city officials will not take into consideration neighborhood concerns and make adjustments to meet us halfway, then we will have to elect officials that will include us when making these types of decisions.
Colin McEwen April 13, 2012 at 03:25 PM
By the way, I should mention that the meeting took five hours — I mentioned that on social media last night — but there were lots of other items on the agenda. The GetGo issue came at the end of the meeting and took only a couple of hours... The meeting started with nearly 100 in attendance, but finished with a handful. Hard to say exactly how many were there for the GetGo issue, but about a dozen folks talked to the board about it.
The original Bill April 13, 2012 at 03:29 PM
From what I can see driving by there is a screen of 10 foot tall evergreens on the southern edge of the parking lot
Colin McEwen April 13, 2012 at 06:07 PM
That's right. And there are a couple more hurdles for Giant Eagle. The opening proposed gas station, by no means, rested on the ABR alone. There's not too much that can be done to prevent a lawful business from opening up in the city. It is, after all, a private real estate transaction.
Dennis Spirgen April 14, 2012 at 10:25 AM
Your comment implies that the City of Lakewood has already decided to go ahead with the Giant Eagle project, regardless of how the residents feel. First, I have not seen any significant ground swell of opposition to the project. Second, I have not seen any factual support for your suggestion that the public consideration of the project is a pointless "dog and pony show." Do you have any support for your accusations, or is this just political posturing?
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