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Developer will try again in New Palestine

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NEW PALESTINE — A developer who has watched two projects fall through at the corner of CR 600W and U.S. 52 will try once more to attract a partner to build a service station and convenience store at the busy intersection.

The notion first surfaced more than a year ago when property owners Credo Investments and Dr. Trevor Lloyd-Jones sought and obtained approval to locate a Casey’s General Store at the northwest corner of the intersection.

Casey’s had plans for a 4,250-square-foot convenience store and fuel island at the site; however, company officials and the county highway department could not come to terms, and the project was shelved, said county planning director Mike Dale.

After that, Lloyd-Jones successfully lobbied for a zoning change on property across the street to allow a similar project at the southwest corner of the intersection.

Ricker Oil Co. had plans to expand into the New Palestine market with its own convenience store and gas station; however, that project stalled over sewer connections.

A Ricker representative was not available to comment Wednesday, but Lloyd-Jones said the company had pulled out.

Now, with prospects at the intersection dried up, Lloyd-Jones will once again appear before the county board of zoning appeals Feb. 27 to seek another special exception for the northwest quadrant.

Special exemption grants from the BZA expire after 12 months, requiring the property owner to reapply if the project does not go forward, Dale said.

“I think he’s hoping to get the site somewhat shovel-ready if someone wants to come in,” Dale said.

Lloyd-Jones said Wednesday he has received some general interest in the property, but nothing has been firmed up, and the prospects of landing a project probably won’t improve until the land use issues are resolved.

“We’re trying to get that corner going,” he said. “We have some interest, but now I have to do my legwork.”

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