Subsequent to a public hearing May 14, the Pickerington Planning and Zoning Commission unanimously approved the rezoning of an 8.96-acre tract of land off Diley Road from R-4 residential to O suburban office.
The rezoning clears the way for a proposed 45-unit assisted living facility that developers want to build on a parcel that is north of Long Road and east of Diley Road and surrounded by residential uses.
Applicant Good Builders Inc. of Logan is in contract to purchase the land from current owner Greater Works Church of Reynoldsburg.
"It has been our desire to see this property be utilized for senior welfare and we are pleased this will be satisfied," wrote Greater Works Pastor Marcia L. Ferko to Pickerington's City Zoning Office.
Good Builders, Inc. advised the city in its "Letter of Intent" the "Elderly Assisted Care Project" will be a "residential-style community" that will serve the population of Pickerington and the surrounding area.
Pickerington City Planner Clement Chukwu said the city's zoning staff supported rezoning the vacant land because the parcel is a "transition site allowing for mixed use."
Chukwu said the zoning change is in line with what was approved by Pickerington City Council for the Diley Road Corridor Master Plan in April of 2009.
That plan focused on land use alternatives for the Diley Road corridor to help maintain a balance of nonresidential and residential uses.
Commission member Ted Hackworth expressed con- cern Florence Drive residents would be cut off from a future direct access to Diley Road with the construction of the facility.
"If we cut Florence Drive off you're going to have a lot of problems on Diley Road trying to get out," Hackworth said.
"I want to say that now before (Good Builders) come in for the (Certificate of Approval)," he said.
Pickerington Development Director Joe Henderson said "that's for a later discussion. In earlier discussions there has not been a desire to make that connection."
The rear of the property abuts the Toldeo and Ohio Central Railroad track that runs through Pickerington.
Good Builders Inc.'s preliminary plans call for the construction of a 27,000 square-foot assisted living facility and a parking capacity of 35 spaces with approximately 407 feet of frontage on the east side of Diley Road.
The matter was scheduled to go before Pickerington City Council's Service Committee May 22 followed by an anticipated first reading at City Council June 18.
If approved after three readings, the effective date of the rezoning decision would be Aug. 15.