Braelinn Kroger gets OK to expand

A plan to expand the Braelinn Kroger grocery store by nearly 43,000 sq. ft. was approved unanimously by the Peachtree City Council Thursday night.

The store will be fully renovated on the inside to make room for a Starbucks bistro, a sushi bar, a salad bar and other expanded services for customers along with wider aisles.

The expansion will bring the Kroger’s size to about 110,000 sq. ft. Packaged with the renovation, the project represents a significant expenditure for the company, city officials said.

Council’s approval was needed because the store expansion put the footprint sailing past the city’s maximum size guideline. The special use permit process allows for commercial operations to petition council to go over that size guideline.

The idea is that council has some leeway to control the size of larger stores wishing to come to the city.

To accommodate the expansion, the Braelinn Village shopping center will relocate the existing tenants on either side of the store.

The planning commission recommended approval of the special use permit for the expansion after Kroger agreed to remove a small parking lot planned for one side of the expansion in an effort to save existing trees to screen the building’s view from the cart path that winds behind the store.

In return, Kroger will be clearing and grading an adjacent undeveloped parcel so it can be used for an equal amount of flood control, officials said.

Kroger has also committed to restoring plant material on the new flood control parcel after the grade is reduced, said City Planner David Rast.

The company modified its site plan at the request of the planning commission, including the extension of the architecture around the front of the store for 100 feet on both sides to increase the visual appeal of the expansion.

To accommodate the expansion, the shopping center will be relocating a total of six tenants to other spaces in the center.

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