Auburn Council Approves New Businesses, Remodels

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BY HANNAH LESTER

HLESTER@OPELIKAOBSERVER.COM

AUBURN —

The Auburn City Council approved a conditional use approval for the Auburn Hotel, commercial and entertainment use for AuburnBank.

The hotel will include 129 guest rooms, in addition to a coffee shop (Bitty and Beau’s), a lounge and rooftop restaurant.

“Just looking forward to another great addition to our downtown,” said Ward 3 Council Member Beth Witten.

This property includes the AuburnBank redevelopment and the parking deck at the back of the rate property.

“It will have a great impact on Auburn, no question about it,” said Auburn Mayor Ron Anders.”

CHIPOTLE REMODEL:

In addition to a new downtown Auburn hotel, residents can expect a remodel to Chipotle on Magnolia Avenue. The council approved the conditional use approval for the road service use.

The remodel will include a drive-through and expansion of the space. Chipotle was reclassified as fast-food.

The property, which was opened as an Arby’s in 1993, was remodeled by Chipotle in 2011. The Arby’s originally included a drive-through.

Ward 2 Council Member Kelley Griswold expressed concern about traffic with the new drive-through.

There was some concern in the planning commission about this as well.

Anders clarified with the City Manager, Megan Crouch, that the window would only serve to pickup already placed orders, not place new orders.

“One thing that’s happened in a number of our businesses, is mobile ordering is the thing and especially with COVID,” Crouch said.

She said the city wasn’t too worried about traffic due to a Chipotle drive-through.

Two council members voted against the resolution, while six and Anders voted for it.

SWANN FARM:

The council approved conditional use approval for the Swann Farm development.

The property includes 77.3 acres which will include office use, a veterinary clinic, retail spaces and commercial/entertainment uses, which could include things such as a bank, barbershop, music store, brewpub, garden supply, grocery store, etc.

The request also included road service, which could include an ATM, a bank, a convince store, a fast food restaurant, a gas station or more.

The developer originally requested use for an assisted living facility, independent living faculty, etc. but the planning commission recommended against it.

“I’m excited to see this go in where it’s going,” said Ward 8 Council Member Tommy Dawson. “It’s the first thing you see when you go past the roundabout coming in on Wire Road … I think it’s a great addition and I’m very excited.”

OTHER BUSINESS:

– The council approved an alcohol beverage license, Class I alcohol beverage license for JK 51 Management, LLC d/b/a Cigar and Fine Spirits.

– The council approved an alcohol beverage license, retail table wine, for Your Pie in Auburn.

– The council approved a contract with the Alabama Power Company for the relocation and installation of street lighting on Wire Road at the Soccer Complex roundabout for over $64,500.

– The council approved a development agreement with Auburn Community Church.

– The council approved a contract with the Auburn-Opelika Metropolitan Planning Organization for updates to the Auburn-Opelika Metropolitan Planning Organization Highway Functional Classification Map.

– The council approved a contract with Axon Enterprise, Inc. for 15 in-car cameras, 26 body-worn cameras and 20 tasers for over $391,000.

– The council approved a contract with Ryan Public Safety Solutions to renew the customer support for the 911 Call Handling equipment for the Auburn Public Safety Department for just under $34,000.

– The council approved a contract with Stone Building, LLC, for the new Environmental Services and Public Works Facility for over $27 million.

– The council approved a contract with Temple, Inc. for the annual management services for the city’s Traffic Control Center for over $88,000.

– The council voted to rename a portion of Lee Road 958.

– The council voted to approve a signal easement for June S. Capps, Rosalind Lauren Burnham and William M. Burham Jr. at 338 W. Glenn Ave.

– The council voted to appoint Sharon Tolbert to the Board of Education.

– The council voted to approve the ad valorem property taxes for the city taxes — five mills for capital projects debt repayment and five mills for general purposes.

– The council voted to approve the ad valorem property taxes for the school taxes, 11 mills for educational purposes and five mills for educational purposes.

– The council voted to approve annexations for the Foresite Group, LLC, on behalf of Swann Farm, LLC (77.3 acres); Mike Maher on behalf of James and Mary Gibson (8.87 acres); and Mt. Sinai Church (4.38 acres). The council then approved a conditional use approval for various uses for the property.

– The council approved rezoning for the Foresite Group, LLC on behalf of Swann Farm, LLC to rezone 77.3 acres from rural to development district housing. The property is located at the southeast corner of Cox Road and Wire Road. The property was then rezoned from development district housing to planned development district.

– The council approved a conditional use approval for a bank with a drive-through at 1901 E. Glenn Ave.

– The council approved a conditional use approval, performance residential development, for a new multi-unit/multi-family development at 2240 E. University Dr.

– The council approved a conditional use approval for the N. Ross Expansion.

– The council approved a conditional use approval, commercial support use, for the Auburn Distribution Facility at 511 W. Veterans Blvd.

– The council approved a vacation of drainage and utility easements for C L & S Subdivisions, LLC (1407 Reynolds Dr.) and Selby Enterprises, LLC (1410 Reynolds Dr.).

– The council approved two demolitions for 556 Foster St. and 637 Westview Dr.

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