One Business Proposes to Move In On Chicago Ave.

By: David Coy Email
By: David Coy Email

HARRISONBURG -- One big business is trying to move in to one part of the Valley but the neighborhood is designed for homes.

Chicago Ave. is home to businesses like Red Front and United Bank. Family Dollar wants to move in on land that's been an eyesore for years. Neighbors say they don't care what's there, they just want something there.

A vacant lot is the home of many old tractor trailers. The Harrisonburg Planning Commission said it's in violation of many things. That all might change if this business moves in.

"What makes this interesting is the fact that the property has a long-term plan for neighborhood- residential," said Harrisonburg City Planner Adam Fletcher.

Fletcher said the city wants to make the street as people and bike friendly as possible. He said this Family Dollar plan doesn't go along with that idea.

"We are opposed to the application that's been presented because, we still feel that there are details about the plan that's being proposed that can be more sensitive to the single family homes that are nearby," said Fletcher.

One of the problems the commission said is that the proposed store is too far away from the the street. Members said there are too many parking spaces for the amount of traffic in the area.

Ken Hammond represents Family Dollar. He said this is the only way the property will work for the store.

"This site has cause a great deal of constipation. If anything it's non-negotiable. The site plan is almost a take it or leave it situation with us just because we haven't found any other way for it to fit," said Hammond.

The Harrisonburg City Planning Commission voted unanimously against the proposal. The city council will still make a decision on whether to accept the proposal on August 13.

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