Proposed Lowe’s Home Improvement Store Gets Initial Approval

Lowe’s location given OK in first round vote
Proposal awaits final approval by Georgetown City Council

May 16, 2008

By Kelly Marshall Fuller – The Sun News

The building of a Lowe’s Home Improvement Warehouse in Georgetown moved a step closer to reality Thursday after Georgetown City Council gave initial approval of the annexation and rezoning of the 28-acre property where the store could locate.

The vote, which came during the regular meeting of Georgetown City Council, passed unanimously.

Although there was a petition with numerous signatures opposing the construction of Lowe’s in Georgetown, none of the people who signed the petition spoke at Thursday’s meeting.

“We’re pleased,” said Dan Stacy, who represents the people who own the prospective Lowe’s location.

“There are a lot of contingencies that have to be met, but this is a great step in the right direction.”

If approved a second time, the property will be automatically rezoned from low density residential to general commercial.

The city also gave an initial approval to a special overlay zone to handle the large signs Lowe’s will erect near its building.

At least 300 signatures have been gathered to oppose the construction of store.

Some Kensington residents said they signed the petition because they want a traffic study before the project is approved.

Residents have opposed the Lowe’s because they are concerned that traffic flowing into the store would be too close to the playground at Kensington Elementary School near Summit Drive.

City administrator Steve Thomas said a traffic study already had been completed.

In other business, the city also gave a first nod to changing the amount of time that speakers could have for public comment.

The time frame would decrease per person if more than six public speakers appeared before the council, Thomas said.

Thomas said more speakers could fit in a 30-minute time slot, since they would be limited to two minutes of speaking time.

Others who wished to speak could appear first at the next meeting, he said.

Council members Paige Sawyer, Clarence Smalls and Peggy Wayne opposed the change, which must still be approved a second time.

“If citizens want to make a comment, they should be allowed to speak,” Wayne said. “There has only been one time where it’s gone over 30 minutes. They should have the right to speak.”

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