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Transformation planned for major city shopping center

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A new development is being planned at the southwest corner of Poplar Ave. and Kirby Pkwy.

The city’s Planning Commission was scheduled to vote on the outline plan for the Carrefour at the Gateway development Tuesday night during its regularly scheduled meeting.

The development would be located on the current site of the Carrefour Kirby Woods Mall and extend to the spot of the former Romano’s Macaroni Grill, which was leveled by a fire four years ago.

In 2014, the 9-acre site was rezoned from a shopping center and commercial district to “urban center” and “urban core” districts, or T5 and T6.

These districts allow a mixture of uses that include residential, retail, commercial and office. They also permit the construction of buildings between 5-to-10 stories in height.

The “concept plans” submitted for the development include more than 430,000 square feet of office space, over 100,000 square feet of retail, a parking garage and a 240-room hotel.

In August, the city’s Smart Code Review Committee recommended that an application from Cannon, Austin & Cannon, the current owners of the shopping center, be considered by the Planning Commission.

If the project is given approval, final site plans will not be allowed by the Board of Mayor and Aldermen until a sewer facility is available for the site.

Nearly 16,000 square feet of civic space has been proposed for the center of the development.

The proposed hotel would be located on Kirby Pkwy. Retail would front Poplar Ave.

A letter of intent from Cannon, Austin & Cannon states that the development will be a “walkable community.”

“The development is designed to create an environment that will attract the residents of Germantown who want to enjoy upscale street level retail shops, entertainment and restaurants.”

It further states that the site is “planned to accommodate business and family travelers and be the site for premier office buildings.”

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