A developer plans to bring a 14,000-square-foot retail building to one of the few remaining vacant properties on Olentangy Street in Powell.
According to plans submitted to the city, Dr. Ali Khaksarfard has proposed to construct a shopping center on 1.5 acres at the southeast corner of Murphy Parkway and West Olentangy Street.
The project would be the second commercial building on the street for the dentist and developer. Powell City Council last year gave him the OK to build Armita Plaza -- a 21,000-square-foot retail complex -- on a vacant parcel at the northeast corner of West Olentangy Street and Traditions Way closer to downtown.
Mark Ford, president of Ford and Associates Architects, said the developer's newer proposal will take design cues from an existing complex at the southwest corner of Murphy Parkway and Olentangy Street without being a copy.
"Architecturally, we really are repeating similar styling," he said.
The existing plaza, which is anchored by Old Bag of Nails Pub, was constructed about a decade ago, according to auditor's records.
Rocky Kambo, a planner with the city's development department, said the new complex will continue a welcome trend near downtown Powell. He said multiple developers are planning commercial centers that serve as a transition between larger big-box retailers on Sawmill Parkway and smaller downtown storefronts.
Kambo said Khaksarfard's newest project is "very much in line" with Powell's comprehensive plan.
"We're very pleased with the location, the use (and) the scale," he said.
While no potential tenants for the building have been named, Kambo said the developer is not planning to bring in any restaurants.
Powell's Planning and Zoning Commission reviewed initial plans for the building June 14.
Commission member Ed Cooper said the project is off to "a good start." He said he thinks the proposed structure fits in with its surroundings.
"I like the idea that it will sort of mirror the building across the street," he said.
Commission member Bill Little said the proposal could continue West Olentangy Street's transition to a shopping hub.
"This whole area can become a really nice retail destination," he said.