GRANGER TWP. — Menard Inc. still plans on building a new home improvement store along state Route 18 between Akron and Medina, despite being rejected earlier this year for a zoning change.
“We are still developing our plans and working our way through the approval process as we hope to build a new store ... at some point in the future," company spokesman Jeff Abbott said in an email. "We have not yet established an official timeline as to when construction might begin.”
The Eau Claire, Wisc., chain has a contract to buy 145 acres at 241 Medina Road and build a Menards store. The property is a former family farm located just east of Pinnacle Sports.
Township trustees had rejected a zoning change for the project in January, saying the company wanted the commercial zoning to extend 1,250 feet off the road when 1,000 feet is the limit. Menard also faced some heavy opposition from neighboring residents.
But township trustee Richard Pace said he expects the company to return with an application through the community's planned development district process, which is a more collaborative effort with trustees and wouldn't require a zoning change.
"I would think they are coming back," he said. "It’s their decision to make now."
Route 18 has seen tremendous commercial growth. The four-lane road, which separates Granger and Sharon townships in Medina County, has added major businesses such as Panther Premium Logistics, National Design Mart and Discount Drug Mart, along with many smaller businesses, in recent years.
It's an attractive, growing area because it runs between Interstates 71 and 77, and there's quick access to Interstate 271. It's also home to the highly rated Highland Local Schools, Pace said.
"There are a lot of good reasons they’d want to still look at that location," Pace said. "It's a real magnet for development."
Menard opened a store last year in Cuyahoga Falls. The family-owned company started in 1958 and has more than 300 home improvement stores in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, Wisconsin and Wyoming.
Rick Armon can be reached at 330-996-3569 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at @armonrickABJ.