GALENA — A school that offers early education programs and child care is coming to Galena Crossing, 1811 S. Galena Road.
The Galena Village Council held a public hearing for an initial development plan on March 22.
“The project will include a Primrose School and office buildings with a common drive off of S. Galena Rd.,” said the meeting minutes. “There are no uses yet for the office building, and they intend to hook into Delco Water and the village’s sewer system.”
There were no public questions or comments, and the hearing was kept open until the next meeting on April 26. At that time, the developer requested the hearing remain open until the next meeting on May 24.
On May 24, the property of just over 6 acres was annexed from Berkshire Township into the village and rezoned from Berkshire Township Agricultural Zoning to a Galena Planned Commercial Office District. The ordinance passed unanimously by emergency.
The initial development plan was recommended by the Galena Planning and Zoning Commission on Feb. 17. Zoning Inspector Levi Koehler’s report listed 12 conditions the developer would have to meet.
Buyer/developer Ehab Eskander said during the Feb. 17 hearing that he and his wife had a 12-year history with the schools, owning five of them, with two in development. They were interested in growing the number of Primrose schools in the area.
The Primrose Schools website said there are 17 schools in the Columbus Metro Area. The Atlanta-based day care and preschool provider has more than 400 locations overall, said project architect Jim Alt of Alt Architecture.
The minutes said Eskander “shared that with the Primrose School they plan to be an asset to support the community and area family’s needs. Additionally, they are fully vested in making sure that the future development of the additional buildings on the parcel will be complimentary to the school and the community’s partnership.”
Village Engineer Mark Rufener, of KEM & Associates, reviewed the initial development plans. He said the plans “meet village codes, and all items once the annexation has been completed appear to be consistent and within compliance,” the minutes said. “The plan is complete enough to offer the recommendation of the zoning approvals with the contingencies outlined.”
During a question-and-answer session with commission members and local residents, it was said the school would have up to 213 students and 25 staff. The developer, architect, and project consultant Stephen Butler also discussed traffic in the area, the entrance, and the playground being close to state Route 3. Village Solicitor Ken Molnar said the property will be subject to a New Community Authority tax to benefit the village.
Property owner Susan Leese “shared her excitement for the upcoming development,” the minutes said. “The house located on the parcel is 101 years old and did at one point in its history serve the community as a day care provider. Mrs. Leese feels that the school will be doing something good for the community.”
Gary Budzak may be reached at 740-413-0906 or on Twitter @GaryBudzak.