Pickerington Times-Sun

Storage One facility

Township BZA expected to render decision May 15

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The decision about whether to grant a conditional-use permit and several variances for a proposed 97,000 square-foot storage facility on southeast corner of Milnor and Refugee Roads in Violet Township is now in the hands of Violet Township's Board of Zoning Appeals.

After hearing additional testimony at a third hearing May 1, the BZA closed the hearing in order to deliberate whether to grant Storage One's application.

Those expecting a decision, however, will have to likely wait for at least two weeks.

"(The BZA has) taken both the conditional-use permit and the variances under advisement," said Jeffrey Vandervoort, an attorney for applicant Storage One Self-Storage.

"(BZA members) deliberated on both issues and did not render a decision," he said.

Storage One Self-Storage seeks to construct a 519-unit self-storage facility at the southeast corner of Milnor and Refugee Roads.

The company applied for five variances to:

• Allow the storage facility to occupy a larger space than is permitted in Violet Township.

• Deviate from required setbacks.

• Allow delinquent sales auctions on-site.

• Allow for building height greater than current limits.

• Waive the requirements for loading spaces.

Storage One also seeks a conditional-use permit to allow a 10-building self-storage business to operate on 7.6 acres of the 10.4 acre site.

Violet Township Director of Operations Benjamin King said "a decision will be rendered by the board" at the next BZA meeting scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 15, in the Violet Township Administrative Office, 12970 Rustic Drive, Pickerington.

Storage One's variance/conditional-use application required three separate hearings because of the large turnout at the first hearing March 20.

Because of space constraints, the matter was continued to April 24 accommodate more people in a larger venue at Pickerington Church of the Nazarene.

Many residents of the Spring Creek subdivision, located in the city of Pickerington, have come out in vehement opposition to the proposed facility, arguing the facility poses a substantial threat to their family-oriented community.

The Spring Creek subdivision is located adjacent to the vacant 10.4 acre parcel upon which developers hope to build the facility.

Residents there have voiced concerns about potential noise, traffic and lighting issues they said they believe such a facility could bring, specifically in terms of the potential negative impact on property values and safety.

Storage One's representatives have posited a storage facility will have little impact on the adjoining neighborhood in terms of noise and traffic and have presented a lighting plan that indicates lighting will be muted and pointed inward on the property.

Storage One has a similar, albeit smaller, facility on Windmiller Drive in Pickerington and its representatives have said that facility has never had any complaints registered against it.

The Violet Township Board of Trustees voted 3-0 to approve rezoning the westernmost 7.6 acres of the parcel on April 16, leaving only the variances and access to be decided.

If the variance/condition-use application is decided in favor of Storage One, access to the proposed facility will have to be resolved.

The proposed development's site plan calls for access to the facility off Spring Creek Drive.

Pickerington city officials have stated access from that roadway requires the city's permission, which the city is not willing to give at this point.

"Access will most likely be handled administratively between the township, city and (the Fairfield County) Engineer's Office," Vandervoort said.

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