New plans for Gardnerville Walmart to be considered Dec. 1
November 27, 2009
After three months of waiting, Gardnerville town staff is recommending approval of new plans for a proposed Walmart Supercenter in south Gardnerville, which will be reviewed 4:30 p.m. Dec. 1 at the town office, 1407 Highway 395.
“It’s a world of difference from what was here in September,” Town Manager Jim Park said on Tuesday. “I really anticipate this will be a strict business meeting where we’ll consider the design and how it complies and fits in with the Virginia Ranch Specific Plan. It’s not a hearing on one establishment’s practices versus another’s.”
Critics have argued the 152,495-square-foot superstore is incompatible with the Virginia Ranch Specific Plan. The 226-acre development was approved in 2004 and includes more than 1,000 residential units and up to 100 acres of commercial zoning, including the 24-acre Walmart site. Guidelines for the plan call for village-like, pedestrian-friendly commercial development compatible with Gardnerville’s historic downtown.
The new plans for Walmart meet the intent of the Virginia Ranch Specific Plan, Park said.
“It complies absolutely,” Park said. “They (developers) have worked hard the last 90 days with everyone, and they’ve come up with this cooperatively. They should be commended.”
New conceptual designs for The Marketplace at Virginia Ranch show 11 separate commercial buildings clustered around the front and west sides of the store, acting as a buffer between Walmart and Highway 395. Ranging in size from 6,500 square feet to 16,600 square feet, the buildings, along with Walmart, put the total commercial square footage of the 24-acre site around 267,216 square feet.
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Park pointed out increased landscape buffers, seeding areas, plazas, pedestrian connectors, pergolas and other proposed amenities that make The Marketplace more village-like and pedestrian-friendly, as called for in the specific plan.
The Walmart building itself, he said, has gained an increased cornice and more articulated facades, and will share common building materials with the rest of the development, similar to the Clear Creek Plaza in north Douglas County.