The Pickerington Planning and Zoning Commission approved three requests March 12, one for an outdoor patio at Rude Dog Bar and Grill and two others for signs and lighting at Pickerington Medical Center.
The conditional use permit for Rude Dog Bar and Grill, 10501 Blacklick-Eastern Road in the Hunters Run Shopping Center, will allow the existing outdoor patio to be increased by 342 square feet to a total of 902 square feet.
The city planning staff recommended the expansion be approved but with a 10 p.m. closing time.
Rude Dog owner Jason Lusk asked the planning and zoning commission to allow more flexibility on the closing time.
"Is it possible to extend to 2 a.m., given we're in a primarily commercial area?" he asked.
He said Rude Dog wants to capitalize on cross-over business from nearby Marcus Cinemas, which will be presenting midnight showings.
"We want to offer a dining option," Lusk said.
City Development Services Director Joe Henderson noted that the planning commission had approved a similar request by the recently opened Roosters, at 1500 Stonecreek Drive S., last July. Extended hours for Roosters' patio were approved because it is not located near any single-family homes, he said.
Lusk asked that his restaurant be granted the same courtesy. The commission agreed to do so, unanimously approving a larger patio and prolonging the patio's hours of operation. It will now be open until midnight Sunday through Thursday, 1 a.m. Friday and 2 a.m. Saturday.
"I would like to stay consistent. If we've done that for Roosters, I can follow that," planning commission member Brian Bosch said.
The new lighting for the Pickerington Medical Center, 670 Hill Road N., is a switch from the LED lights that were approved in January. That plan was scuttled after it was discovered the light fixtures did not meet the city's minimum "foot-candle" requirements.
The new plan calls for metal halide lights and reduces the height of the facility's light poles from 24 feet to 17 feet.
The medical center's comprehensive sign plan for wall, ground and directional signage also was approved by a 6-0 vote.
The wall signs will be located at the front entrance to the facility's rear building, which will be designated for LabCorp, a diagnostic testing company.
The double-faced ground sign, at 10 feet tall and 15 feet wide, will be a total of 150 square feet in size. It will be located on Hill Road North. The ground sign will be divided into five separate panels, the largest of which will display a sign for Complete Healthcare for Women.
The new medical office has sparked controversy in Pickerington because of its affiliation with Dr. Mervyn Samuel, who operates a branch of Complete Healthcare for Women on Cleveland Avenue in Columbus that performs abortions.
Anti-abortion activists have picketed in front of the 670 Hill Road N. location several times a week since late January.
Representatives from Dr. Samuel's office have maintained that abortions will not be performed at the Pickerington location.