The work group addressing land use where Walmart wants to build in Caledonia is back on a schedule and has two new members.
Planning Commission members Wednesday approved a new timeline that could lead to a decision for Walmart by the end of the summer.
Walmart has submitted rezoning and land use plan amendment applications for the farm field at 4-Mile and Green Bay Roads so the company can build a 182,000 square foot supercenter. Resident opposition has been fierce with most people pointing out that the site is not appropriate.
To help reconcile inconsistencies in the zoning and the land use plans, Village Administrator Mark Janiuk and Attorney Elaine Ekes suggested the original neighborhood planning group be brought back together - with Plan Commission members - to plan for the future of that site.
The group was to have met for the first time on so he could have some time to get more familiar with the issues.
On Wednesday, he told the commission that he was adding Roger Wipf from KMart and Kevin Milaeger from Milaeger's to the group.
"I felt there were some people missing so I think having Roger and Kevin participate will help even out the group," he said.
Janiuk passed out a new meeting schedule, noting the timeline is still rather aggressive because it doesn't do anyone any good to drag out the process any longer than necessary.
"It doesn’t do anyone - not Walmart or the people opposed to Walmart - any good to drag this out," he said. "This is an attempt for a decision so we can all move on with our lives."
Bradley made sure to mention that the focus of the work group should be a vision for the site and not Walmart.
"One of the critical things is that is not about Walmart or any business; it’s about the comp plan and that should be the focus," he said. "We have to remember this could be any business and only focus on the impacts of making the amendment."
After the meeting, Katie Tiderman said she appreciates Bradley adding two more retail members to the group and she hopes he has someone else in mind - she'd like Roundy's - if Milaeger falls through.
"I hope that if Milaeger is unable to participate then (Bradley) reaches out to Roundy's because they were part of the original group and can offer good insight into the demographics and shopping habits of the village," she said.
Trustee Kevin Wanggaard is new to the Planning Commission this cycle and said he agrees with the process, but thinks the village needs to multi-task and look at other village centers.
"This is just one piece of the puzzle," he said. "We're going to have water and sewer going out to the expressway so we're going to have to focus on those areas to start attracting good businesses to help us grow our tax base."
Here is the schedule as approved by the Planning Commission Wednesday:
- May 1, 6 p.m.: Collect public input
- May 15, 6 p.m.: Work/discussion
- June 5, 6 p.m.: Work/discussion
- June 19, 6 p.m.: final recommendation by majority vote to Planning Commission
- June 26, 6 p.m.: Planning Commission meets to consider the work group's recommendation and then vote on a recommendation to the village board
- July 1, 7 p.m.: Village Board meets to set a public hearing date to consider the commission's recommendation
- Aug. 12: Public hearing
The Village Board will act on the Planning Commission's recommendation Aug. 19 at their regularly scheduled board meeting.