The Yumii Kettle Corn Co. moves forward in the process to open its first brick and mortar location.
The Delaware Planning Commission gave its recommendation to City Council to approve renovations of the former Oakside Animal Clinic building, 339 S. Sandusky St., along with a conditional use permit for the outdoor dining area.
“We’ve been looking at coming to Delaware for a long time,” said Steve Flaherty, the business’ owner.
He said they looked at another property a few years, but decided to go the food truck route to build interest. The location will start out with about four employees, he said.
The eatery is expected to open next spring and will serve popcorn, sandwiches and ice cream from Bexley-based Johnson’s Real Ice Cream.
The commission amended a condition for the outdoor seating to stay open until 10:30 p.m. instead of sundown. Some members said customers would need time to finish their ice cream after the business closes at 10 p.m. during the summer.
A commission member proposed that the Yumii Kettle Corn closed the outdoor seating area a half hour after it closes because business hours vary.
But Flaherty said it could pose an issue in the future.
“If somebody else were to come in and use the conditional use and try to get that by and say they want to open until midnight then you’re opening it up … to be 12:30,” he said.
Planning Director Dave Efland said he’s never had an applicant make his case.
“I appreciate it. I never had an applicant pick up my card,” he said. “That’s a first.”
The commission approved three other items on the agenda. Wednesday night’s thunderstorm briefly interrupted the meeting with a brief power outage and two firefighters visiting City Hall because the fire alarm went off.
Tom Colatruglio answered questions about development plans to expand 45 River St. into a River Street Business Park. He now owns the 2,340-square-foot building, where his business is located, but plans to add to build a 15,500-square-foot and 6,000-square-foot facilities for commercial, office and warehouse purposes.
Residents expressed concerns about traffic and the height of trees along an abutting alley of the property. City officials said they would work with Colatruglio to have the trees not exceed 20 feet in height.
The commission also approved for Council consideration:
• A request to make Shorty’s Casual Cuisine’s temporary outdoor dining permit permanent. The restaurant at 554 W. Central Ave. also intends to make upgrades to its patio, which includes a wooden fence, a pergola and sun shade.
• Maronda Homes’ final subdivision plat for Curtis Farms Phase 4 development, located on Delaware Drive, which consists of 33 single-family homes. The original development, approved in 2003, consisted of 120 single-family units over more than 31 acres. Phase 1 and 2 were completed in 2005 and 2009, while Phase 3 got the OK in 2015.
Gazette reporter Brandon Klein can be reached by email or on Twitter at @brandoneklein.