D emolition is underway near the shopping center that houses Johnson’s Home and Garden, as a developer begins a planned facelift and expansion of the property.
Current plans call for a Walgreens and a Grocery Outlet for the shopping center, which is located in the northwest corner of the Four Corners intersection at state Route 169 and Kent-Kangley Road. Other major new tenants have not been announced.
Building and construction permits remain under review for Kite Realty Group’s Four Corner Square, but demolition permits have been approved and the overall site has design approval, says Maple Valley Director of Community Development Ty Peterson. View a PDF of the site plan HERE.
Peterson acknowledges that the shopping center’s current design does not cater to walkers and the “civic center” vision as much as the city hoped it would when city leaders drew up an idealized plan for the northwest quadrant of Four Corners in 2009. Read more about that vision HERE.
Ultimately, the city does not have control over every aspect of a developer’s design, Peterson points out. The city can only require a developer to meet the requirements of the Maple Valley Municipal Code, and Kite Realty has done that.
“The design is not as inspirational, pedestrian-oriented or efficient as the first project approval, but it does meet the minimum requirements of the code,” Peterson says.
In 2009, the city envisioned small shops and restaurants facing a pedestrian-focused street that would run from Kent-Kangley all the way up to the city’s legacy site across from Rock Creek Elementary.
Kite’s site plan does include a north-south road with a sidewalk extending from Kent-Kangley to the northern boundary of the site, but it appears as if that street will run behind the existing shopping center and behind the new Johnson’s building. The main buildings of the site appear to face parking areas, primarily.
The site plan does include access for pedestrians from the Lake Wilderness trail.
Representatives from Kite Realty, which is based in Indianapolis, did not return emails and phone messages left over several weeks requesting comment. Their website does not identify a possible completion date.
According to the site plan, the shopping center would nearly double in size, expanding into what is currently an empty lot behind and north of the existing Johnson’s and south of the Maple Valley Fire and Life Safety building.
Johnson’s will be relocated so that it is north of the existing shopping center strip that houses Papa Murphy’s pizza, with the back of the new store along the Lake Wilderness trail. The store will expand to 35,000 square feet with a 12,000-square-foot greenhouse, according to the current site plan.
It appears that several existing buildings will remain in place, including the strip that houses Papa Murphy’s and the building that houses City Perk Espresso.
It appears that the current Johnson’s building will be demolished with a new Walgreens building sited roughly in its place. The Grocery Outlet will be sited at the north end of a new strip that will include the new Johnson’s as its anchor.
Dairy Queen is undergoing design review for exterior remodeling, says Peterson.
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