Oak Ridge officials on Monday will consider project approvals for two highly anticipated commercial developments on Illinois Avenue, one a Kroger Marketplace shopping center and the other a Weigel’s gas station and convenience store.
The $30 million Kroger shopping center would be built on about 25 acres at the busy intersection of Oak Ridge Turnpike and Illinois Avenue, but the land has to be rezoned.
The rezoning has already been endorsed by the Oak Ridge Municipal Planning Commission, which unanimously recommended it in a 10-0 vote during a Sept. 27 meeting.
It now has to be considered by Oak Ridge City Council. Council will consider it on Monday in the first of two monthly votes, or readings.
The proposed site now includes more than 50 homes and duplex units, two hotels, a restaurant, and daycare on Iris Circle, Oak Ridge Turnpike, North Illinois Avenue, Robin Lane, and Ivanhoe, Raleigh, and Robertsville roads.
It could also include the Oak Ridge Unitarian Universalist Church. On Sunday, congregation members agreed in a 169-12 vote to sell their 3.6-acre site to the shopping center, which could open in 2014.
Meanwhile, the request for the Weigel’s would allow one full-use access to the new store. That access, at the southern entrance to the 1.5-acre site on busy South Illinois Avenue, would allow left and right turns into and out of the store.
The other northern entrance to the 4,000-square-foot store would only allow right turns in and right turns out.
The proposed entrances to the 16-pump gas station have already been approved by the Oak Ridge Traffic Safety Advisory Board.
Some city officials have had concerns about traffic entering and leaving the new store, but a Knoxville engineering firm prepared a study for Weigel’s in September that said the new store would have a minimal impact on traffic.
The Weigel’s entrances would also have to be approved by the Tennessee Department of Transportation since Illinois Avenue, or State Route 62, is a state road.
Monday’s City Council meeting begins at 7 p.m. in the Oak Ridge Municipal Building Courtroom.