The Lodi Planning Commission unanimously agreed to rezone a 9-acre property that previously had three zoning designations, opening the door for a new development near Raley's.
Kristmont West owns the property the Raley's Shopping Center is located on, and also the vacant property south of the grocery store on the northwest corner of West Tokay Street and South Lower Sacramento Road.
Parts of the site were zoned for commercial use, as low-density residential and as highand medium-density residential. Tom Smith, a representative for Kristmont West, said they needed one designation to help market the property.
The commission agreed to rezone it as planned development, which is the same as the Raley's Shopping Center.
"There are no construction plans proposed, but there is hope that removing the constraints of three different zoning designations from the property will lead to development," Lodi Associate Planner Immanuel Bereket said.
There are several possibilities for the site, Smith said. Raley's is currently negotiating a new lease, and might consider expanding. He said the developer is also considering expanding West Lodi Self Storage, and a gym is interested in building in that area.
"We want to clean the zoning up if we can and then go forward with the development," Smith said.
Temple Baptist Pastor Steve Opp said his church, which is south of the site, is not opposed to the new zoning, but wanted to know more about what type of business could go in there.
City Manager Rad Bartlam said the designation is broad and could include retail businesses, an office development, a gas station or a restaurant. It could also be high-density residential use, but Bartlam said the developer has no plans for that.
Opp said his congregation would support what he described an "active use," like a shopping center or office building. He said they would oppose a "passive use," like a used car lot or a place where people store boats or RVs, because it would be unsightly.
Commissioner Randy Heinitz assured Opp that any new development would still have to be reviewed by the city before it went forward.
"Anything that does happen will come before the Planning Commission to be looked at and dissected," he said.