Grandview Heights Planning Commission members reacted favorably Nov. 17 to a proposal that a private pre-school would move its operations into a portion of the second floor of the building at 855 Grandview Ave.

Grandview Heights Planning Commission members reacted favorably Nov. 17 to a proposal that a private pre-school would move its operations into a portion of the second floor of the building at 855 Grandview Ave.

Bill Greenlee of ROI Realty Services told the commission a request for a conditional use to allow a franchise of the Goddard School to move into the building is planned for the December commission meeting.

An informal discussion was held this month to make sure the general concept was viewed favorably by the commission and to hear about any concerns, he said.

Although a lease agreement has not been finalized, the preschool plans to occupy 8,000-10,000 square feet of the center floor of the three-story building, Greenlee said.

The school would be moving from its current location on Town Street in downtown Columbus.

If the commission grants approval next month, the preschool would plan to move its operations to the Grandview Avenue site in January, using a temporary 3,600-square foot modular structure to house students and staff while the permanent space inside the building is completed, he said.

The goal would be to have the permanent space complete by April, Greenlee said.

The Goddard School has about 95 students at its Town Street location, ranging in age from six weeks to six years old, said Meredith Bailey, school director. The school is anticipating that about half of the families will follow Goddard to the new location, she said.

Although the Grandview Avenue site will be smaller than its current location, it will still allow room for a growth in enrollment, Bailey said.

The school would place an outdoor play area at the rear of the building, she said.

Planning Commission president Sheila Clark asked about the idea of placing a preschool in the same building with business tenants, especially whether noise would be an issue.

A Loth office furniture store is located on the first floor at 855 Grandview and Group Management Services, Inc., a professional employer organization, occupies a portion of the second floor.

The school is meeting with the other tenants to review plans for the school and to ensure noise will not be a problem, Greenlee said.

"I think they understand (the school) is an amenity to the community" that their employees may be able to use, he said.

The Town Street site is a high-rise, Bailey said, and noise is not a problem for the other tenants.

In other business, the commission tabled a request for approval of a ground sign for the property at 1664 W. First Ave.

Signcom Inc. is seeking approval for a business identification sign at the building, which is at the northwest corner of First Avenue and Oakland Avenue.

The sign would be placed at the southwest corner of the parking lot.

Commission members expressed concern the ground sign would make it more difficult for vehicles to back out of the lot and noted that other businesses along Grandview Avenue make do with building signs instead of ground signs.

All ground signs must have commission approval.

City staff recommended approval since the proposed sign area is within code limits and the sign height is below the six foot limit set by code.

Staff's recommendation was that the approval be on condition that a landscape plan be submitted for approval.

Bruce Somerfelt of applicant Signcom Inc. said the applicant will be back next month and take the commission's concerns under consideration.