The Lodi Planning Commission approved Home Depot coming to town and plans for Reynolds Ranch at its meeting Wednesday night.
Dale Gillespie, project developer of Reynolds Ranch, said the plan is to hold the groundbreaking on the entire center in July. The 154,114- square-foot Costco is set to open its doors by the end of this year, while the 134,240- square-foot Home Depot aims to open in 2011.
Other shops in the center would begin to appear in late 2011, with the majority of the other stores opening in 2012, he said.
With barely any conversation, the commission approved the store and project's plans in a 6-0 vote with commissioner Tim Mattheis absent.
Their vote will be the final approval necessary for Home Depot and the shopping center, as long as no one appeals the decision to the Lodi City Council.
The Planning Commission approved Costco on Feb. 10, and it was appealed by Melissa and Charles Katzakian, who live in a historic home near the project. The council will vote on the final approval of Costco at its May 5 meeting.
The plans for Reynolds Ranch include five other major retailers that will be 18,000 square feet or larger. The plans also include locations for a drugstore, a restaurant, two banks and nine smaller shops.
In total, Reynolds Ranch will include 493,795 square feet and 2,464 parking spaces.
Commissioner Wendel Kiser said he was pleased with the retail center's architecture.
"I think it really looks good and is thought out well," he said. "I think it will turn out to be a very nice project."
Commissioner Dave Kirsten said the only concerns he has heard revolve around traffic, and he believes that will be eased with the city's project to widen Harney Lane to four lanes.
"Everyone that has a position on the project has spoken," he said. "I don't think the community seeks to block the project or keep it from going forward." There were no public comments on the project, even though the commission did receive two letters from concerned residents.
A letter focused on traffic concerns came from representatives of Miller Farms, which is near the project.
Also, the Katzakians submitted a letter nearly identical to the one they submitted when Costco was before the commission.
The Katzakians are appealing the project's state-mandated Environmental Impact Report. They argue that the EIR had assumed their historic house would be used for a retail, but since they have not been able to reach an agreement with Gillespie, they are still living in their house.
If the house were to remain residential, the couple believe that the city would have to do a new environmental analysis on the area to measure the land use impact of the project on the residential property.