After three hearings and more than 10 hours of testimony, opponents of a proposed Powell Target store rested their case last week as residents voiced reasons the retailer's zoning certificate should be overturned.

After three hearings and more than 10 hours of testimony, opponents of a proposed Powell Target store rested their case last week as residents voiced reasons the retailer's zoning certificate should be overturned.

Chris Hogan, the attorney representing about 70 nearby property owners, most of whom live in the Villas at Woodcutter condominiums, questioned a dozen homeowners who said depreciation of property value, increased traffic and safety concerns were among the reasons the big-box doesn't belong in their neighborhood.

Opponents are asking the Powell Board of Zoning Appeals to overturn a zoning certificate issued in October for a 132,873-square-foot store at 7525 Guardwell St., at the southeast corner of Sawmill Parkway and Home Road.

After about five hours May 22, the BZA recessed proceedings.

Another hearing is scheduled for 4 p.m. June 4, at the Village Green, 47 Hall St.

Attorneys for Target site owner Triangle Real Estate and the city are expected to present their cases beginning June 4.

Woodcutter residents said last Thursday that Target will bring more cars, people and a chance of increased crime.

They also cited pollution from store lighting, litter, diesel fumes and semi truck-traffic on residential streets as detriments to their neighborhood.

Woodcutter resident Suzanne Kaczmarek said she is "opposed to the idea of living next to a discount store and that's what Target is.

"I think a store of that nature not only devalues the area but becomes a place for kids to gather and hang out. When you start bringing in the number of people that are going to come to a Target to shop, you are increasing the potential for crime in the area," Kaczmarek said.

Homeowners referred to Target's plans as a "pile of pavement" and an "asphalt jungle."

"When I sit on my veranda и I will be looking at the loading dock," said Janet Enck.

Triangle attorney Bruce Ingram said Target plans a six-foot-tall grass mound planted with six-foot tall evergreen and deciduous trees to help screen the store.

Ingram also said tractor-trailers will be required to drop their loads and will be not be permitted to sit with engines running at the site overnight.

Several residents testified that Target is too big and too tall to be considered "pedestrian scale," something Hogan said is required under the Golf Village Development Plan.

"There's no smaller scale than pedestrian scale," Hogan said, adding the development plan calls for buildings that are "pedestrian-friendly, not pedestrian neutral."

Woodcutter condo association president John W. Crowder said some patios will be about 90 feet from the rear wall of the store.

Crowder said he believes Target will be "financially devastating" to many of his neighbors because of a drop in property values. Many use their condos as part of a retirement plans, he said.

"Most of that traffic will be circulated right around here и where we live," Crowder said. "We just don't see how they can consider that pedestrian-friendly."

Hogan also questioned Powell Development Director Dave Betz, asking whether Golf Village "needs a Target."

Betz said under the development plan, commercial and office uses are to be "developed as needed adjuncts to residential development" and that served as a time line for build-out of the 1,000-acre area.

The timing for building the store is connected to the development of the overall Golf Village area.

"It is being done near the end of all the residential development and it's time for this property to develop," Betz said.

The Ohio Fifth District Court of Appeals on May 12 denied a request for injunction to prevent the BZA hearings.

Hogan filed that request May 8, asking the court to stay BZA hearings until it rules on an appeal filed by the Golf Village Residents Association, a non-profit organization to which many of the appellants belong.

The group was denied "legal standing" to appeal Target by Powell's BZA. In March, Delaware County Common Pleas Judge W. Duncan Whitney upheld Powell's decision and remanded the case back to the BZA.

The GVRA has appealed Whitney's decision to the appellate court but a hearing date has not yet been set.

kyouman@thisweeknews.com