Shallotte OKs Walgreens building design

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By Staff Brunswick Beacon

SHALLOTTE—Aldermen have approved the designs for a Walgreens, planned for the old Jones store location. Tuesday night they gave developers directions toward improving the area’s loading dock for public safety and the parking lot for esthetics.

The board met at its pre-agenda meeting Tuesday in the newly refurbished council chambers across from town hall and approved the planned building group design for the new store.

Elizabeth Nelson, an engineer from Bowman Design and Engineering Services, representing the developer, informed the board Walgreens had provided an additional diagram noting how different sized trucks could park in the loading space.

At the last regular board meeting, aldermen expressed concerns over the size of the trucks and the size of the loading area, saying the trucks would block the customers’ entrance to the parking lot.

After seeing the diagrams Tuesday, aldermen recommended extending the size of the concrete pad, providing a “visual cue” to truck drivers not to travel in the asphalt area.

Also at the last board meeting, alderman Walt Eccard expressed concern about allowing a commercial building with parking in front, when the upcoming Shallotte Vision Plan is leaning toward pedestrian friendly development with parking behind the buildings.

Although the town has not yet adopted the plan, Eccard asked a Walgreens representative to consider providing visual buffering between the parking lot and Main Street. He agreed.

“Hopefully, this would be the start of a new pedestrian friendly Main Street,” Eccard said. “Walgreens is a nice transitional area that’s consistent with that part of town.”

He then asked the board to consider requesting more pedestrian friendly commercial development in the future.

Alderman Larry Harrelson responded that the vision plan is a good one, but the unified development ordinance (UDO) needs to be amended soon after the plan is adopted if the board is going to follow that mandate.

“We can’t start frowning on things that are allowed in the UDO,” Harrelson said.

Eccard agreed and said, once the plan is adopted, the staff should begin amending the UDO to reflect that change.

SARAH SHEW WILSON is a staff writer at the Beacon. Reach her at 754-6890 or at swilson@brunswickbeacon.com