Two requests for special exceptions from Georgetown’s parking requirements were unanimously approved at a July 1 Board of Adjustment meeting.
College Park Retail, which is building a shopping center to include a Redner’s Market and other stores, requested a 30 percent reduction of the 448 spaces required by the town. The center is currently being built at the corner of U.S. Route 113 and College Park Drive.
Garth Jones, a licensed professional engineer with Becker Morgan Group, said College Park Retail is proposing 314 spaces, which provides a buffer for additional landscaping as the project is finalized.
Jones said the site’s developers feel 314 spaces would provide adequate parking for the shopping center’s use.
“They would not present a project without enough parking,” he said. “That’s bad for business.”
Jones said less asphalt and more landscaping reduces impervious surfaces, thereby improving water quality in the Chesapeake Bay watershed and preventing flooding during heavy rainfall. He added public transportation is available in the area via the Delaware Transit Corporation and, as part of the project, developers are making improvements to the pedestrian network in the area by adding sidewalks and pedestrian signals.
“We’re trying not to create a sea of asphalt and a perfect example is across the street [at Walmart],” Jones said. “There is a tremendous amount of parking that meets code, but even during holidays there’s still a lot of parking not being used on the site.”
Board member Bill Lecates said he supports approving the application because it’s imperative the town work towards having more trees than asphalt.
“Also, they’re in the business to make money,” Lecates said. “They’re not going to shortcut themselves with parking to save a few dollars.”
G Plus Properties, which is building a Bayside Health medical facility on U.S. Route 113, requested a waiver of required loading space to allow for more parking.
According to Brad Gillis of G Plus Properties, the facility will house a women’s health practice whose day-to-day operations will not include large deliveries. Gillis said his company has built several medical facilities and extra parking is always needed.
“We’ve all been to the doctor’s office,” he said. “Sometimes we’ll meet our significant others there. Sometimes we have multiple cars.”
Gillis added that Georgetown’s code does not require a loading zone for buildings that are less than 10,000 square feet and the Bayside Health facility only exceeds that limit by around 3,000 square feet.
Page 2 of 2 - Board Vice Chairman Eric Evans said he supports approval of the application, but he’d like G Plus Properties to consider inclusion of an ambulance entrance.