The Elk Grove City Council Wednesday night gave property owners another year to build the proposed Vineyard at Madeira Shopping Center, adding new conditions aimed at .
“Having an extension of time gives us the ability to continue to attract tenants and the ability to try and advance this project with the earliest possible date,” Vineyard spokesperson Kim Whitney said. “We think it will be a plus for the community and the city in terms of generating revenue.”
The new requirements include:
- Limiting hours of operation from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Sundays
- Prohibiting overnight parking and putting up signs so police can enforce the ban
- Submitting delivery truck, security and maintenance plans
Walmart wants to build its store using entitlements originally granted in 2008 for a Target at the same location, at the intersection of Bruceville Road and Whitelock Parkway.
The new conditions arose after a group of residents concerned about noise and traffic from a Walmart over the permitting process, and council members asked the discount chain to meet with the residents. Walmart is appealing the court ruling.
“This thing has probably been one of the most convoluted issues we’ve had as long as I’ve been on the council,” Councilmember Patrick Hume said. “I’m glad it’s finally been whittled down to something with some common ground.”
Brett Jolley, attorney for the residents, said his clients are still reviewing the new conditions.
“I can tell you there are some they’re not satisfied with,” Jolley said. “We’re not there yet, in my opinion.”
Although the , only a handful of residents spoke, including a man who said he was eager for a Walmart to open near his home.
Another resident, however, voiced concern that a Walmart that sold groceries would hurt existing stores.
“We’ve got a Nugget and a Trader Joe’s within a rock’s throw of this site,” Steve Lee said. “If we put that Walmart in, I’m afraid these stores would close down and I’d hate to see us lose the two finest stores we have in the city.”
City officials and representatives for the retail chain emphasized that the permit extension wasn’t specifically for a Walmart. It extends the conditional use permit granted in 2008 for a 148,000-square-foot retail discount store with 10 percent or less of its footprint dedicated to groceries.
Walmart would still have to make a specific proposal outlining the size and format of its new store to move forward.
Councilmember Gary Davis questioned whether Walmart would stick to the 10 percent limit, saying he’d had a conversation with a company representative who said the Madeira store could go as high as 20 percent.
“We have to acknowledge that there is a trust factor here,” Davis said. "If they can’t move forward without a 20 percent grocery footprint, and the shopping center developer can’t move forward without an anchor store, then maybe we shouldn’t waste any more time on this issue.”
Walmart spokesperson Amelia Neufeld, however, said the issue before the council Wednesday night was preserving the rights granted in the 2008 permit.
“What we hear from our customers is that they would like to see more groceries, but that’s not what’s on the table tonight,” Neufeld said.
The council also voted Wednesday to extend by another 90 days to give staff more time to go over its zoning code definitions for retail and grocery stores.