Council approves plaza elbow room

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AUBURN – Rezoning a narrow strip of land at the back of the Mount Auburn Plaza gives developers more room to work, they said Monday.

Councilors approved a plan to rezone a 49-foot-deep strip bordering Dewey Avenue. The 750 feet long parcel is the only part of the lot not zoned for retail. Like nearby houses, the strip is zoned for urban residential use.

Developer George Schott needs the extra space to close remaining deals on the shopping area, according to Greg Mitchell of Eaton Peabody Consulting Group.

The rest of the land, zoned general business, contains two restaurants, a Ruby Tuesday and Longhorn Steakhouse. A third restaurant, a T.G.I. Friday’s, is planned there as well.

According to developers, the 14.5-acre plot of land has room for four more retail developments.

“Because of some recent developments and negotiations, we needed that extra room to redesign the site plan,” Mitchell said. “There is more destined for that site.”

Mitchell would not say what companies were considering moving into the area.

Schott also owns the mall and negotiated to land Kohl’s last year in the same area. The plaza and the plot under the new Kohl’s are both part of a tax break negotiated with the city and tied to the level of new investment.

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