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04-21-06 Only one step left in approval for Menards

By Janie Southard

  One more round of city approval and it's a go for Menards at Harbor Square.

  The Celina City Planning Commission on Thursday approved the site plan for construction of a new 200,000-square-foot home improvement store. Only approval from city council remains to be secured, which is expected Monday night.

  Celina City Safety Service Director Jeff Hazel assured company officials at the planning commission meeting that the city ordinance already has been written tentatively as an emergency, meaning the required three public readings will be put aside.

  Mimi Fisher, assistant developer of Dayton-based R.G. Properties, site developer for Harbor Square, said after all is processed through city council and after a 30-day appeals period, construction on the site could begin in early June.  

  About seven acres, which is being purchased from Crown Equipment Corp. to the west of the Menards site, also was approved by the planning commission for rezoning from manufacturing to highway commercial district (M1 to B3).  The new Menards will be the same size and carry the same merchandise as the stores in Lima and Findlay. The store will become the largest in the area at 234,000 square feet, topping the Wal-Mart Supercenter next door by 31,000 square feet.

  In response to planning commission concern about traffic congestion on Havemann Road especially during the Christmas season, Menards' representative Mark Lee explained that Menards' big season is in spring and early summer.

  "Although people do buy tools as Christmas presents and we are pleased with that, they are typically not interested in home improvement during the holidays. I doubt there will be a problem," he said.

  The Menard Company, founded in 1972, is the third-largest home improvement chain store in the United States behind Home Depot and Lowe's. Its 210 stores are mainly in the northwest region of the country.


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