By Perry Schaible
MASON - City Council has put off voting on a zoning change request that would allow a major shopping and commercial development on 209 acres on Kings Mills Road.
Mayor Peter Beck said there were too many unanswered questions on the issue, which drew an overflow crowd Monday night. The issue will be before council again Oct. 25.
"It will change Mason from a small town to a large town," he said. "It will change the identity of Mason."
Glimcher Development Corp. of Columbus wants the zoning change to planned unit development to accommodate two projects - City Park and Park Center.
Plans for City Park, a project on the north side of Kings Mills Road, include retail space, a movie theater, four office buildings and a hotel. On the south side of the road, Park Center would include a strip retail center, a hotel, office space, and a big-box retail store. No tenants have been named for either development.
Bill Murray, a resident of Fairways at Pine Run, the development that surrounds the Golf Center at Kings Island, is concerned that additional traffic and congestion will hurt property values and cause safety hazards.
Two residents represented Trailside Acres, the closest subdivision to the proposed development, and presented council with a list of seven issues, including traffic concerns on Ohio 741.
The company has agreed to make several roadway improvements in phase one of the project, including widening Ohio 741 from Interstate 71 and improving and widening Cox Smith Road.
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