Canal Winchester Village Council voted unanimously last week to adopt a revised preliminary development plan for Winchester Circle, but not without bringing up concerns about parking spaces again.

Canal Winchester Village Council voted unanimously last week to adopt a revised preliminary development plan for Winchester Circle, but not without bringing up concerns about parking spaces again.

According to a traffic study done on the approximately 30-acre retail site at the southeast corner of Diley and Busey roads, 855 is the minimum number of parking spaces needed and 1,437 is the maximum. The design has 1,413.

"In this particular case, it almost looks like overkill in terms of parking spaces," Councilman Bruce Jarvis said. "What you're getting is the response, 'man that's a lot of parking.'"

Shree Kulkarni, chief legal officer with the site's developing company, Kulkarni Construction and Design Group, said reducing parking spaces could make it difficult to market any of the seven parcels in the plan, "especially in this economy."

"Depending on the tenants involved, everybody has different needs," Kulkarni said.

Jarvis asked about the possibility of reducing the number of parking spaces by 5 to 10 percent if a retailer decided to locate to the area and didn't need the amount of spaces planned. He said he would like the excess space to remain green space.

"I'm just trying to gauge in advance, would you have a problem with that?" Jarvis asked.

"I can't truthfully say I would not have a problem with it," Kulkarni said.

Samir Kulkarni, Shree's brother and KCDG's chief operating officer, said that in revising the preliminary plan, company officials followed new development standards for parking orientation and space from the village zoning code. He said 1,413 parking spaces will prepare the site for a "worst-case situation."

"A lot of restaurants have very stringent requirements," Samir Kulkarni said. "We can't handcuff ourselves from being able to promote the site, making it the best site possible."

Councilman Victor Paini said the number of spaces in the Easton Market area, west of the Easton Town Center, is a less-favorable parking lot design.

"I think we're trying to avoid the situation they have there, where they have 40 percent more parking than they need," he said.

Samir Kulkarni said negotiating fewer parking spaces with retailers can be difficult because they are looking to have sufficient parking during the holidays.

Village development director Chris Strayer suggested adding language in the preliminary plan reminding the planning and zoning commission to limit parking as the site develops.

"Therefore, it's not really hindering (KCDG), and it gives us a little leverage," he added.

Paini seemed unconvinced that this would work.

"I don't know that this amendment gets us anything," he said. "We said please and now we're saying pretty please?"

"There's got to be some teeth in this," Jarvis added. "There is an issue that's larger than this problem and I don't know how to approach it."

Shree Kulkarni said if parking were removed, he'd like to add square footage to the parcels.

Strayer said parking lot standards were updated last year and zoning figures for space amounts were updated three years ago.

"I'd leave it in the hands of planning commission," he said. "(The plan) is going to be tweaked."

"Without a doubt," Shree Kulkarni added.

Councilwoman Marilyn Rush-Ekelberry reminded her fellow council members that the "key word is 'preliminary'" in the site's plan.

Strayer said in accordance with village code, the planning and zoning commission will forward any major modifications back to village council.

He said development on the property likely will begin in five to seven years.