Westfield City Council approves playhouse, riverfront district

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The Westfield City Council met March 12. The next council meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. March 26 at city hall, 130 Penn St.

What happened: The council approved a license agreement to allow Westfield Playhouse to relocate to a city-owned property in downtown Westfield, 7-0.

What it means: Currently, the Westfield Playhouse is at 1836 Ind. 32 on the far west side of the city. The playhouse wants to occupy a plot of land owned by the city in downtown Westfield to construct a new playhouse. The playhouse would take over all responsibility for the property, including maintenance.

“It would be nice to have them downtown,” Council President Jim Ake said. “They felt with the growth of the community and trying to create pedestrian traffic in downtown Westfield that it would be nice to find a way to get down here. I’m very excited to have this coming downtown. It adds to the ambiance as we grow our downtown and as we create a special place here, it will be a fine addition.”

The establishment of a riverfront district was approved for the Grand Junction Redevelopment Area in downtown Westfield, 7-0. (Submitted image)

What happened: The council approved an ordinance to create a riverfront development project area to allow for more control over liquor licenses in the Grand Junction Redevelopment Area in downtown Westfield.

What it means: The ordinance would allow the city to have additional liquor licenses if it needs them. Although the council would still maintain control over building use and commercial development, the ordinance would allow more liquor license availability.

“We have an opportunity now, and the reason this is before us now also is because (the state) legislature is contemplating a change, so the timing has to do with that opportunity,” Ake said. “We are a hospitality city, and we have a lot of guests. They spend money here, they need to eat here, so there are some advantages to taking a look at this opportunity we have been given here.”

What happened: The council approved an amendment to the Oak Ridge Pointe Planned Unit Development district, 7-0.

What it means: The approval will allow for a bank to be constructed on the property to the southwest of Ind. 32 and Oak Ridge Road.

 

What happened: The council approved an ordinance for the Compton Planned Unit Development, 4-3.

What it means: The approval  allows for the construction of a new office building at 156th  Street and Springmill Road. Council members Robert Horkay, Cindy Spoljaric and Joe Edwards voted against the proposal. Horkay and Spoljaric cited an office building in a primarily residential area as their main concerns.

“It’s quite a bit to put on this parcel,” Spoljaric said. “The building may be an improvement, but expanding this in a residential area concerns me.”

Council member Steve Hoover said he also had concerns about the location, but since no public objection was given by neighbors, he voted for the proposal.

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