Attorneys for Liberty Township on July 25 filed a motion in Delaware County Common Pleas Court, seeking a stay to halt construction of a Powell Target store.

Attorneys for Liberty Township on July 25 filed a motion in Delaware County Common Pleas Court, seeking a stay to halt construction of a Powell Target store.

The township also requested a stay from the Powell Board of Zoning Appeals at its July 24 meeting.

The request came after the BZA approved the findings of fact that support the city's decision to issue Target a zoning permit to build a 132,873-square-foot store near the southeast corner of Home Road and Sawmill Parkway. The permit was issued in October 2007.

"Without a stay, the zoning administrator is free to issue a zoning permit to the developer and work could begin," said Craig Paynter, attorney for the township. "We're trying to protect the township's rights to appeal this decision and get a decision from the common pleas court that's meaningful in relation to the possibility of long-term development."

The township filed an appeal of the city's Target decision with the Delaware County Common Pleas Court on July 18, township administrator Dave Anderson said.

The appeal has been assigned to Judge W. Duncan Whitney. Liberty trustees approved the appeal earlier this month.

Powell has 40 days from the day the appeal is filed to file findings of facts that the BZA approved at its meeting, said city law director Gene Hollins.

The township said the Target permit violates an agreement between the city and township, the comprehensive economic development agreement (CEDA). It was signed in 2002 by the city and Liberty Township and set stipulations for annexation into the city.

City manager Steve Lutz said although the BZA upheld the Target zoning certificate, the city will hold off on issuing it.

"Regarding the stay issue, I look at it as a moot point because the city is not planning to issue the zoning certificate, since we know that the township is appealing the BZA's decision," Lutz said.

bbutcher@thisweeknews.com