Liberty Township has abandoned its court battle against a Target store planned in Powell.

Liberty Township has abandoned its court battle against a Target store planned in Powell.

During an emergency meeting last week, a motion to appeal a Delaware County Common Pleas Court defeat of Liberty's lawsuit against Powell died without a second.

Judge W. Duncan Whitney dismissed the township's appeal of Powell's decision to approve a zoning certificate for the construction of the 132,000 square-foot store. Whitney said the township lacks standing to appeal.

Trustee Robert Mann wanted to appeal Whitney's decision, he said in an e-mail, but his motion to appeal was not supported by trustees Peggy Guzzo and Curt Sybert.

Powell city manager Steve Lutz said in an e-mail, "The city does not view the township's decision not to appeal the proposed Target as a victory for big-box retail. Both Powell and Liberty have legislation that restricts big-box development. This matter was about a unique parcel whose zoning text originally approved by the township predated the big-box legislation. The city was legally obligated to apply that zoning text to Target's application in a fair and reasoned manner, and Judge Whitney in his decision has confirmed that the city has fulfilled its obligation."

Lutz added, "The city remains committed to the development of the area in accordance with its master plan and the cooperative economic development agreement (CEDA). With this matter behind us, city officials are optimistic that the city and the township can resume finding areas of economic cooperation intended by the spirit and letter of the CEDA agreement."

Bruce Ingram, attorney for Triangle Properties, said he would not comment on the latest development in the Target case until he consulted with his client.