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Edmond To Decide Zoning Issue

Bobby Ross Jr. Published: March 29, 1995

EDMOND - When voters go to the polls Tuesday they won't decide whether a planned Crest Discount Foods superstore can be built at the southeast corner of W 15 and N Santa Fe Avenue.

But they will settle a zoning question that opponents contend could mean the difference between an originally proposed 110,350-square-foot store and a scaled-down 78,980-square-foot version.

Tuesday's tally will decide zoning on five acres just south of 10 acres where Crest now plans its third store.

The formal ballot wording doesn't give a clue that the issue relates to Crest. It states: "Shall the following Ordinance be approved? Ordinance No. 2116, rezoning certain real property generally located South of the Southeast corner of Santa Fe Avenue and 15th Street in the City of Edmond, being approximately 5.33 acres in size, from 'C-3' High Density Residential and Commercial Services District to 'D-1' Restricted Commercial District? " The Edmond Neighborhood Alliance and Allied Residents in Support of a Safe Edmond promise last-minute campaigns aimed at informing voters about the referendum's ramifications and urging "no" votes.

Nick Harroz, owner of Midwest City-based Crest, has kept his options open.

That includes the possibility of reverting back to the larger store if voters support the zoning change. Even the smaller store would be Edmond's largest supermarket.

Revival of the original plans would require Edmond City Council approval, City Attorney Steve Murdock said.

Harroz's stance has drawn opposition from the Edmond Neighborhood Alliance, which has about 30 member homeowner associations.

"This is a referendum certainly on whether residents want a larger store," said alliance President Dan O'Neil.

The alliance proclaims in an open letter to residents: "To give you an idea of just how big a 110,000 store is, the Sam's at Memorial is 100,000 sq ft and Albertson's at 15th is 52,000 sq ft.

This is certainly more than a neighborhood grocery store. " Mayor Randel Shadid doesn't quarrel with the way opponents define Tuesday's question, but he takes an opposite position.

"I hope the voters approve the council's action, obviously," Shadid said.

That would mean a "yes" vote to endorse the council's zoning change on the five acres from "C-3" high density residential and commercial services district to "D-1" restricted commercial district.

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