Mansfield could end up with two Lidl grocery stores, both on the east side of town.
On Monday, the City Council advanced the zoning change for a Lidl on East Debbie Lane near Matlock Road and got its first look at a site on East Broad Street across from Mansfield High School.
The German grocery store is making a big push into North Texas and across the United States, said Kevin Gaskey, an engineer with Kimley Horn who represented Lidl. He compared the stores to Trader Joe’s.
Neither location requires a variance to sell beer and wine.
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Mansfield has a plethora of grocery stores on the east side already with more coming. Both Lidl sites will have four competitors in close proximity.
The Lidl on East Debbie Lane will join Kroger, Walmart Neighborhood Market, Aldi and Sprouts. The proposed site on East Broad Street would be near the existing Kroger Marketplace and the future Market Street, just east of MHS, the Natural Grocers, at Texas 360 and East Broad Street, and H-E-B, planned at U.S. 287 and East Broad Street.
Councilman Larry Broseh questioned if this was a smart business decision.
"I’m trying to figure out in my mind why Mansfield needs another store, albeit a specialty store, so close to a multitude of other stores," Broseh said.
Lidl did market research before it picked these sites, Gaskey said.
"They like to be near other grocery stores," Gaskey said. "They do not want to open a store and then have to close it so they believe the market is here."
The 36,000-square-foot store on East Debbie Lane is proposed on land once owned by the Community of Hope United Methodist Church. The church’s worship center is just to the east.
The City Council voted 4-1 Monday to approve the store on East Debbie Lane on second reading. The third and final vote is set for July 24. Councilman Terry Moore voted against the zoning change.
Council members Brent Newsom and Stephen Lindsey were absent.
The 36,000-square-foot site on East Broad Street would have much the same look as the other store. The council voted 4-1 to approve the zoning change for the East Broad Street store on first reading with Moore voting no. The project will return for the second of three votes July 24.
The brick store would face west with the majority of the parking on that side facing Mary Orr Intermediate School.
The developer is also negotiating with Mansfield ISD for use of the driveway at Mary Orr. The store would also share an entrance with Fire Station #3.
Townhomes need more work
The proposal for 77 townhomes on South Main Street failed 3-2 with Broseh and Moore voting no. The council ultimately decided to table the zoning change to the July 24 meeting where they could have the full council.
The biggest concern is that the council wants more airtight language to discourage the townhomes from becoming rental units.
Despite the concerns, Hoffman said the Main Street Village project is important because it brings residents to downtown.
"We’re talking about a stirp of land here that’s gone undeveloped for a very, very long time," Hoffman said. "I can’t think of any appropriate use for this sliver of land. I really don’t want to see this project die on the vine. It’s something that could be a great asset for downtown Mansfield."
Main Street Village will be owner occupied with strict rules on renting, according to the covenants, conditions and restrictions presented to council. Rentals will be limited to between six months and 12 months and the home must be occupied by the parties named on the lease.
Overnight, daily or short-term rentals, such as those offered by Airbnb, will not be allowed. Also, no unit can be rented for the first year after it was purchased.
And no owner can lease more than one property within Main Street Village.
The townhomes will start at $250,000 for the smallest units with a projected size of 1,650 square feet. The larger townhomes could be up to 2,100 square feet.
Councilman Cory Hoffman has concerns about the lack of articulation on some of the renderings that were shown, especially for homes that will back up to South Main Street.
The developer, Skorburg Company, still hasn’t decided what to do with the dog park. Mayor David Cook said he’d like for it to be a public park maintained by the city.
Wendy’s is back again
Wendy’s will try again to build a restaurant next to Vernon Newsom Stadium.
The council voted 5-0 to approve the zoning change on first reading.
The zoning change returns for a second vote July 24.
The revised plan has the Wendy’s perpendicular to East Broad Street at the southwest corner of Holland Road. The zoning change also includes a 5,200-square-foot sit-down restaurant.
The developer originally proposed a mix of retail and restaurant uses in the other building but the council only wanted restaurant uses.
Last year, the zoning change for Wendy’s was denied by the council because of the layout of the fast-food restaurant and drive thru.
As a condition of the new proposal, the developer, GP Holland Xing, agreed to nix plans for a Schlotzky’s just down the street.
The developer is buying the land from Mansfield ISD.