Woodbury retail plan is open for comment

  • Article by: KEVIN GILES , Star Tribune
  • Updated: March 18, 2008 - 4:36 PM

The city is seeking comments on the environmental impact of a proposal for 300,000 square feet of stores and offices near I-94.

A proposed Woodbury business development that would include 300,000 square feet of retail and office space, including a Super Target store, is now open for environmental review.

Commerce Hill, as the project as known, would be built on 37 acres of undeveloped land near Woodbury Drive and Tamarack Road in northeast Woodbury. Plans include construction of a storm-water pond to control runoff and six smaller buildings anticipated to be banks and restaurants.

Commerce Hill would be situated about a mile from another, and larger, eventual business development along Interstate 94. That proposal, in the city's long-range plan, would create a 580-acre business park with retail stores, office buildings and housing.

The developer, JMW Group of Minneapolis, proposes to start construction this spring or summer and finish in the fall of 2009. About 203,000 square feet would be for retail use, with another 57,400 square feet for offices, JMW said in its application to the city. If approved, Commerce Hill would be built on an open field where corn grew as recently as two years ago and would be about the same size as the nearby Woodbury Lakes commercial district.

Some residents of the Wilmes Lake neighborhood, south of the proposed development, have expressed concern that runoff from buildings and parking lots might cause flooding on the lake. The city has said that the storm-water pond will contain and control that runoff.

"I can say with complete certainty that it won't add to the peak water level of Wilmes Lake," said Steve Kernik, Woodbury's environmental planner.

The city plans to hold an informational meeting for Woodbury residents at 6:30 p.m. April 2 in the City Council chambers at City Hall, 8301 Valley Creek Road.

Meanwhile, the city asks that written comments on the environmental worksheet be submitted to Kernik by April 9. Copies are available for review in the planning department at City Hall and on the city website at www.ci.woodbury.mn.us.

Kevin Giles • 651-298-1554

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