AUBURN — At its March 12 meeting, the Auburn City Council approved a new No Parking zone along Tullahoma Drive. The city received multiple complaints about the impacted area and shared research from Engineering Services and Public Safety concerning vehicles parking on both sides of the road and making it problematic for school buses and emergency vehicles to safely access the roadway.
Citizens are instructed to contact the police department if a vehicle is illegally parked in the area and officers will patrol the area, enforcing the new rule. Vehicles may be towed if they block access on the road.
The Council passed a resolution in support of the Auburn Industrial Board’s move to purchase 211.45 acres of property on Webster Road, adjacent to the Board’s existing Industrial Park in the amount of $4,651,900.
The Council also voted to amend a State Community Development Block Grant for coronavirus assistance to re-allocate $139,470.57 for utility and rental assistance to other areas where it will be applied locally to assist families who continue to struggle from food insecurity. This amendment was requested because there are no longer valid applications for Covid-19 specific cases for utility or rental assistance. It was explained that the left-over dollars from the original Covid grant will be moved to the East Alabama Food Bank and the Boykin Food Pantry.
There was one abstention to the Council’s consent agenda.
The Council also:

  • discussed alcohol beverage licenses for Aramark Educational Services, LLC for events at the Martin Aquatics Center, Plainsman Park and Soccer Complex, the Country Club of Auburn, LLC with a special events retail ABC license, and Greenawalt Hospitality, LLC (B and B Beverage Management) for AU Beard Eaves Coliseum, for Brown‐Kopel Engineering Student Achievement Center and a special events retail ABC license.
  • discussed contracts with CAAM Real‐Estate LLC. Development Agreement for One Auburn ‐ Miracle Rd/Sarah Ln Townhomes and Rotolo Consultants, Inc. Exit 57 Landscape Maintenance. Landscape and Sustainability for $54,647.82.
  • discussed traffic control signs and devices, establishing a “No Parking” zone along Tullahoma Drive. Unanimous consent was necessary to pass.
  • discussed resolutions for Concurrence for the Webster Road property acquisition and the City of Auburn State of Alabama CDBG‐CV Grant Award Formal Amendment
  • highlighted local achievements, including Auburn Firefighter Dakota Talmadge, who was chosen on the competitive television program ‘The Voice’ and three local youths who competed in the Greater East Alabama Region Science and Engineering Fair: Kevin Yan, Eddie Bough and Jack Parsons. The three became finalists for the international event. Thanks were given to the school system and educators for fostering a love of learning.
  • recognized Josh Evans of the Auburn Fire Department as Employee of the Month. The Council also approved service awards for the following people: Gabby Filgo Parks & Recreation, 10 years; Rebecca Green of Human Resources, 10 years; Valerie Temple of the Auburn Public Library, 10 years; Chauncy Moore of Environmental Services, 15 years; Brandon Rowland of the Auburn Public Library, 15 years; Jimmy Butler, Jr. of the Police Department, 20 years; George Creighton of the Police Department, 20 years; Cynthia Ledbetter of the Auburn Public Library, 20 years; and Jarrod Nelson of Information Technology, 20 years. They also honored retirees Riley Brice, Jr. of Engineering Services, 31 years; and Mike Daughtry of Information Technology, 16 years.

MARCH 19, 2024

Athens, Georgia-based eatery Café Racer is on track to fill a long-vacant property after a slightly divided Auburn City Council voted to approve the company’s Road Service Use application during Tuesday’s night city council meeting.
Once complete, the restaurant will occupy a 1,500 square-foot building located at the intersection of Opelika Road and North Gay Street. Ward 4 Council Member Tyler Adams estimated that property has sat unoccupied for nearly 10 years due to the site’s characteristics.
Ward 6 Council Member Bob Parsons, who supported the business “in principle” and wished it well, was the only member who voted against the application. Parsons’ opposition echoed concerns from the Auburn Planning Commission, which recommended the council deny the application due to the proposed use not being consistent with the future land use designation.
Café Racer representative Brad Galland told the council the restaurant viewed Auburn as an ideal location to expand to based on shared characteristics with Athens, primarily being a mid-sized town filled with college students.
“I wouldn’t be standing in front of you right now if we didn’t believe very anally that this would be a great location for us, but also the community,” Galland said. “So why Auburn? It fits the mold, it fits what our ownership is comfortable with, and again, we’re just doing our very best to be good neighbors and good stewards of the community.”
Galland estimated the Auburn location would likely see a near 50-50 split between drive-thru and on-site business, similar to what the restaurant’s Athens location currently experiences. While unable to provide council members with an approximate number, Galland said he believed the restaurant could “very comfortably” seat between 40 and 50 people.
Foresite Group LLC representative Brett Basquin told the council that while developers have not yet completed a traffic study, they were confident customers could enter and exit both Opelika Road and North Gay Street. Galland said the restaurant was committed to adding as much parking as possible to avoid traffic congestion, particularly along Opelika Road.
Ward 8 Council Member Tommy Dawson enquired about the location’s potential economic impact, specifically how many people it would employ. According to Galland, the Athens location currently employs around 40 people who earn nearly $20 per hour on average.
Ward 2 Council Member Kelley Griswold, who opposed a previously proposed Guthrie’s franchise at that same location, supported Café Racer’s application for several reasons. Among those reasons were that the location didn’t generate any tax revenue and that denial could signal the city is biased against outside investors.
The council approved the application 6-1. Ward 7 Council Member Max Coblentz did not attend Tuesday’s meeting.


  • The council approved special events retail ABC licenses for Country Club of Auburn LLC and Greenawalt Hospitality LLC doing business as Auburn Bar Services and B and B Parker Hill, respectively. Those licenses cover events at the Parker Hill Event Venue, located at 100 Carroll St., on April 5 and 6.
  • The council appointed Celeste Norris to the Auburn Water Works Board. Norris’ six-year term begins on April 6 and ends on April 5, 2030.
  • The council voted to annex Biltmore Commerce Park LLC, located at 94 Lee Road 9, and the Evans property, located at 178 Lee Road 72. Those annexations encompass 92 and 3.4 acres, respectively.
  • The council voted to rezone The Estates at Arborwoods, located at 1601 Sandhill Road, and Biltmore Commerce Park LLC. Those changes apply the Conservation Overlay District designation to nearly 59.5 acres in the Rural zoning district and convert 92 acres from Rural to Industrial, respectively.
  • The council renewed a franchise agreement with the Tallapoosa River Electric Cooperative. That renewal extends franchise rights for 30 years from the ordinance’s effective date. The current agreement expires on April 19.
  • The council approved The Bodnar Group LLC’s conditional road service use application to redevelop a 5,000-square-foot building located at 1120 S. College St. into a restaurant with a drive‐thru. City officials declined to identify which restaurant will occupy the space during the public comment period.
    The council approved Foresite Group Inc.’s Performance Residential Development application for the 250-unit ArchCo North Dean Road development located at 1397 North Dean Road.
  • The council approved Pinnacle Design Group Inc.’s Performance Residential Development application to construct the Glenn Triplex at 620 E. Glenn Ave.
  • The council approved RaceTrac Inc.’s Road service use application to develop a 6,000-square-foot gas station and convenience store at the southwest corner of Shelton Mill Road and U.S. Highway 280.
  • The council approved The Foresite Group LLC.’s Industrial use application to expand the Auburn Center for Developing Industries complex located at the 900 block of Shug Jordan Parkway.
    The council approved Pinnacle Design Group Inc.’s Commercial support use application to develop a 9,000-square-foot US Security Systems warehouse and office building at 267 W. Veterans Blvd.
  • The council approved resolutions providing Donaldson Company Inc. and Pyongsan America Inc. with non-educational ad valorem and sales and use tax abatements. Those companies will receive an estimated $228,000 and $202,600 in abatements, respectively.
    Auburn Mayor Ron Anders reminded Auburn residents that Saturday, March 23 is Hazardous Waste Collection Day. Anders encouraged residents to dispose up to 20 pounds of paper documents, computers and other electronics for destruction or recycling. Residents may bring their waste the city’s new Environmental Services Complex, located at 4277 Wire Road, between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m.