Publix Super Markets Inc. appears to be preparing for an expanded store in Cobblestone Crossing, as the Daily Record first reported Jan. 17.
Legislation was filed with City Council on Wednesday to rezone 13.35 acres at 2771 Monument Road to increase the maximum allowable commercial space.
That's the address for Cobblestone Crossing in East Arlington.
The proposed zoning changes include increasing the allowable commercial space from 93,272 square feet to 102,921 square feet, an increase of 9,649 square feet.
The legislation will be introduced Tuesday.
The Daily Record reported in January that shopping center owner Cobblestone Sub LLC of Aventura was negotiating with Publix to rebuild the store on-site.
Cobblestone Sub LLC manager Daniel Halberstein said then that if the deal takes place, the project would be developed in 2014.
"Most likely if this does happen, it will happen sometime in 2014," he said. No other tenants would be affected.
"We definitely don't want to hurt the neighborhood and the tenants," he said, adding that developers are trying to make sure "if the project happens that it happens quickly."
Halberstein said Wednesday the negotiations were in the final stages and he hoped to have the lease signed in the next month or two.
"Then we proceed to rebuild," he said.
Halberstein said construction would take about seven months. He said the timeframe depends on the regulatory and building approvals.
Cobblestone Sub LLC applied Jan. 2 to the City for a concurrency reservation certificate and mobility fee calculation certificate to tear down the existing 44,595-square-foot Publix grocery store and build a new 54,244-square-foot store at the site.
The certificates were issued Jan. 9.
The Publix has operated at the Cobblestone Crossing shopping center since it was built 27 years ago.
The concurrency and mobility application shows that a new building, an addition and an accessory building would be developed.
"The existing building is being replaced with a new building that is 9,649 square feet larger than the existing building. The new building will be used for the same shopping center use," states the application.
The project agent is engineering and planning firm England, Thims & Miller Inc.
Halberstein declined in January to disclose the investment costs of the project, but said "it will be pretty sizable."
He said the project would include renovations of the center's façade.
Cobblestone Crossing was developed in 1986. Property records show it comprises five buildings and is valued at $8.23 million for tax purposes.
One of the five buildings is the Publix, shown at 45,000 square feet. It is valued at $1.3 million.
A preliminary site plan filed with the application does not show that any occupied existing retail space is affected other than the Publix store itself.
Halberstein said the expansion would take three vacant spaces next to Publix.
"Publix had looked into moving the store somewhere else," Halberstein said, but he said that did not work out and Publix began talking with Cobblestone Sub LLC.
Halberstein said Publix has been operating on five-year lease options and the current lease does not expire for a couple of years. A rebuilt store would trigger termination of the current lease and a new 20-year lease would begin, he said.
Halberstein said in January that Cobblestone Crossing was 92 percent occupied and there were discussions with tenants he could not disclose for the remaining 8 percent.
Publix spokesman Dwaine Stevens said Wednesday evening the company does not have a deal approved at the Cobblestone location.
Downtown McDonald's to open Tuesday
McDonald's plans to open Tuesday in its Downtown location at 201 E. State St. The sign at State and Market streets, directly across from Burger King, says the restaurant will open Tuesday.
The 3,905-square-foot restaurant was built at a construction cost of $689,426, according to the building permit.
McDonald's was built on part of the former Warren Motors site. The dealership business moved to Brentwood and the site was cleared for McDonald's and a Family Dollar store.
Developer J.J. Lamberson said the Family Dollar store should "go vertical," meaning the walls will start being put up, next week.
Bam Bam's Asian Grill
The City issued a business license for Bam Bam's Asian Grill at 10916 Atlantic Blvd., No. 8. Phinarak Hao Industries Inc. is listed as the owner.