Site plan approved for Ashwaubenon Chick-fil-A
By Kevin Boneske
ASHWAUBENON – The village’s Site Plan Review Committee voted Tuesday, March 16, in favor of a site plan to construct a 4,872-square-foot Chick-fil-A restaurant in the Bay Park Square parking area off of South Oneida Street.
Community Development Director Aaron Schuette said the free-standing restaurant will be built immediately south of the Anderson Drive entrance to the mall.
Schuette said the Chick-fil-A will include seating for 88 inside and 16 outdoors, and have two drive-through lanes, parking facilities, signage and associated utilities.
He said it is allowed to locate by Bay Park Square under the property’s planned unit development (PUD).
During review of the site plan, Schuette said staff discovered the current setback for the building as planned is located 27.7 feet from the South Oneida Street right-of-way, though the setback for the street is currently 35 feet.
As a result, he said a condition of approval calls for the Ashwaubenon village board to amend the PUD to reduce the setback to 25 feet along South Oneida Street.
Schuette said a reduced setback would assist the Chick-fil-A project and two other buildings on the property currently within the 35-foot setback.
He said the two non-compliant buildings could have ended up inside the existing setback because of the reconstruction of South Oneida Street with additional right-of-way being acquired.
Schuette said construction on the restaurant won’t be able to begin until after the board would approve reducing the setback at its April meeting.
Schuette said Chick-fil-A’s popularity is expected to increase traffic by the mall, and the two drive-through lanes would have a capacity for 37 vehicles.
“As staff, we were concerned about the traffic being generated and the potential impact on South Oneida Street,” he said. “Chick-fil-A did engage a group (for a traffic impact analysis).”
Schuette said no engineering design issues are expected to affect South Oneida Street with a new Chick-fil-A, though a few improvements are recommended for the internal drive path in the mall, such as a dedicated right-turn lane into the restaurant.
“We expect this Chick-fil-A to be a little more popular than your standard fast-food restaurant,” he said.
Schuette said TADI, the firm doing the traffic impact analysis, used traffic data from a Chick-fil-A in Brookfield located in a mall setting to come up with the design recommendations for the internal drive path by Bay Park Square.
“As staff, we recognize that traffic will likely be an issue for the Chick-fil-A,” he said. “We expect it to be very popular, which is a good thing.”
Schuette said he expects there could be traffic backing up on South Oneida Street in the first three to six months after the restaurant opens, based on the popularity of the Chick-fil-A franchise.
“If there are any backups onto South Oneida Street that require the assistance of public safety for traffic control, direction, so on and so forth, the cost of that would be borne by Chick-fil-A,” he said. “It’s similar to any other business requiring public safety assistance for a large event.”
Schuette said the conditions of approval also include implementing crosswalk and traffic island improvement recommendations in the traffic impact analysis, as well as an agreement with Ashwaubenon Public Safety regarding the responsibility for costs associated with necessary traffic control.
Trustee Gary Paul said he hoped a restaurant like Chick-fil-A would locate by Bay Park Square.
“I think it’s a good addition to the mall,” he said. “I think we will be well-pleased with the turnout that will happen there.”
Third wall sign
In other action, the committee approved a third wall sign for Chick-fil-A, so the restaurant will be able to have signs on the north, east and south elevations.
Under the village code, wall signs may be allowed on three sides of a building with approval from the committee.