A local developer is once again attempting to build a commercial and residential development at one of Arroyo Grande’s gateways, despite failing to push a similar project through late last year.
According to city documents, developer Nick Tompkins of NKT Commercial has proposed a development on his 4.47-acre vacant lot at the corner of East Grand Avenue and South Courtland Street.
The current project calls for three commercial buildings, totaling approximately 15,600 square feet; four second-story, two-bedroom condos; and 38 single-family detached homes. The majority of the residential homes would be three-bedroom units, with only two four-bedroom units. The project would also feature a common area for guest parking and a small neighborhood park.
The proposal may look familiar to some — it is essentially the same project Tompkins proposed last year, with some alterations made at the request of city officials. Most notably, the number of commercial buildings increased from two to three, and the number of single-family detached homes decreased from 41 units to 38.
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Those adjustments are in response to concerns expressed when the project went before the City Council for final approval in December.
The council denied the request 3-2, with the majority of members saying they wanted more commercial development at the site, criticizing the “high-density” residential development.
Instead, the council approved a memorandum of understanding with NKT Commercial to negotiate a new development agreement that would feature more commercial space and fewer residential lots, according to a city staff report on the project. Tompkins chose this option.
A city staff advisory committee reviewed and approved the revised project July 22, according to a city staff report.
It was scheduled to come before the city Planning Commission on Tuesday but was continued to the commission’s next meeting on Aug. 18 to "ensure proper notification in accordance with Department Policy regarding onsite posting."
If approved by the Planning Commission, the project would still need to go before the City Council.
This will be the fourth time Tompkins has proposed a project at the property, which he purchased in 2007.
In 2010 and 2011, the council considered but never took final action on retail center proposals at that site that at one point called for a Food 4 Less grocery store, which many residents believed would harm existing grocery stores and increase traffic, according to previous Tribune reports.
Tompkins could not be reached for comment Tuesday.