New movie theater, bowling alley rezone passes Fraser Planning Commission
May 13, 2011
The Fraser Planning Commission unanimously recommended approval of rezoning and final plans and development permits for a new entertainment center in Grand Park.
The center would be located on .92-acre just north of Pine Creek Plaza in Winter Park and would include a two-screen movie theater and eight-lane bowling alley.
The property, once known as the McConnell Lot, was acquired separately from the rest of the village and still has the original business zoning on a portion of the property. The remaining portion of the parcel and the surrounding property to the north and west is part of the Grand Park planned development district.
This rezoning would make the zoning throughout the Village at Grand Park consistent and would bring this parcel under the same master sign plan and design requirements as the rest of the village.
Brian Dornbusch of Alan Carter Architect designed the building using a “LoDo-looking,” concept, he said at the May 11 commission meeting. The design includes a faux smokestack, false windows and brick façade.
The look is “a little bit train-station-eque,” Dornbusch said. “But, it is a warehouse district type of building.”
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The tallest exterior wall will be 28 feet and the stadium seating will hold about 112 people per theater. Careful design will help buffer the sound between the bowling alley and movie theater, Dornbusch said.
This parcel, like the rest of the village, will be landscaped with cottonwood trees, which grow well and provide plenty of shade, as well as native grasses, a few shrubs and the occasional spruce, according to Grand Park developer Clark Lipscomb.
Proposed traffic patterns were a primary concern for the commission and several members of the public who spoke during the hearing.
Speaking as a citizen, Katie Riemenschneider asked about a vegetative buffer between the bike path and parking area.
Dick Norman, representing Pine Tree Plaza, said his association supports the development but had a few comments regarding design elements on the south side of the building, which will be the elevation plaza residents view.
Another Pine Tree Plaza board member Cory Burris said, “We very much welcome you developing next to us. That’s a heck of an investment and we appreciate that.”
Marc Unicume, the proposed buyer of the property, commended the commission for holding a special meeting to help move the approvals forward so that the purchase agreement can be finalized.
“The planning commission is really trying to work with you. We are very excited about this,” said planning commission Chairman Philip Naill.
“Nowhere else on the planet have I had this,” said Unicume, a developer who owns a shoreline house on Grand Lake.
“We’re very excited to have this happen in Fraser,” said Fraser Town Planner Catherine Trotter.
The requests will move on to the Fraser Board of Trustees, June 15, for a second public hearing and possible action.
Reid Armstrong can be reached at 970-887-3334 ext. 19610