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GGP Needs Rezoning for Beachwood Place Expansion

Parent company hopes to attract tenants for a to-be-developed expansion

The joint work session between Beachwood City Council and the Planning & Zoning Commission was more about preparation than action.

GGP, the parent company of Beachwood Place Mall, will expand the retail hub in the coming months, but in order to do so, the city will need to make zoning text and map modifications.

Speaking on behalf of GGP, Jim Heller of Cleveland-based ka architects said there was no timetable or specific plan for for the expansion just yet. Leaving options open, he said the important part was that a 5.6-acre section of Richmond Road — from George Ziegler Drive to the southern property line of La Place — is rezoned from residential to the U-4B shopping center classification.

"We want to bring good, quality tenants to expand the mall and bring that much more solidarity to the future of Beachwood Place," Heller said.

GGP has purchased the remaining lots on the strip in question, and city planner George Smerigan agreed that there wouldn't be much use in keeping that area zoned under a residential classification.

The mall additions could be interior-exterior expansions, most likely restaurants, Heller said. Other new tenants could be housed in two-story expansions.

"How we assemble these together is yet to be seen," he said.

GGP has no official expansion plan to present to council yet, but Heller said the zoning change would help the company in its effort to attract tenants. He stressed that point because companies like GGP are operating in an atmosphere where "retailers are wooed." He said Beachwood has already missed out on four retailers "you would have loved to have had here."

He declined to identify the retailers, but said they would be announcing openings at in other eastern suburbs this fall.

Dan January 08, 2013 at 03:44 PM
This is insane - the traffic along Richmond & Cedar is already terrible and with Eaton about to bring in around 2,000 employees about to get way worse. Why do we need MORE stores??
Joseph January 10, 2013 at 02:55 AM
How could city planner George Smerigan say "there wouldn't be much use in keeping that area zoned under a residential classification"? Did he check with the people who live in houses right across the street from there? That entire area is all residential, he should ask those people if they would mind having restaurants and stores across the street, with all kinds of cars pulling in and out. Currently all access is via George Zeiger Drive and Cedar Road, but they want to build direct entrances on Richmond Road. They were promised a buffer zone, I guess those promises have been conveniently forgotten.

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