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February 15, 2017

Lidl store would make Broadview much busier

Photo/Lawrence Emerson
About 33,000 vehicles use Broadview Avenue in Warrenton on a typical day. Lidl’s traffic consultant projects the store would add 3,269 “vehicle trips” on a weekday.
Filed last week in Town Hall, Lidl’s application for Warrenton includes this conceptual illustration for the proposed, 36,000-square-foot store.
Lidl
• What: German grocery chain with 10,000 stores in 27 countries.

• Proposed site: About 4 acres at 394 Broadview Ave., Warrenton, replacing Cheswick Motel.

• Store: 36,000 square feet.

• Proposed: 25-foot landscape buffer along Norfolk Drive and Bear Wallow Road and sidewalk along Bear Wallow Road and Broadview Avenue, 208 shared parking spaces with McMahon’s Irish Pub.

• Applicant seeks: Town council rezoning of rear portion of site from residential to commercial use.

• U.S. headquarters: Arlington.

• Planned: About 100 stores in U.S. so far, along the East Coast from New Jersey to Georgia.

• Website: www.lidl.com

• Facebook: Click here.
By .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Staff Journalist
A proposed grocery store could increase traffic volume by 10 percent on Warrenton’s busy Broadview Avenue, according to the rezoning application.

German grocery giant Lidl wants to build a 36,000-square-foot store at 394 Broadview Ave. next to McMahon’s Irish Pub and Restaurant. The market would replace the old Cheswick Motel, which stands vacant.

Lidl, which promotes “high-quality, fresh products at the lowest possible price,” will open its first U.S. stores by 2018. It plans 25 in Virginia.

The company last week filed its application to build in Warrenton, where it proposes to redevelop about four acres.

Broadview Avenue averaged 33,000 “vehicle trips” per day in 2015, according to the most recent Virginia Department of Transportation count.

The proposed grocery store would generate an additional 3,269 vehicle trips on a weekday, according to a traffic study Gorove/Slade Associates conducted for Lidl and filed with the application. On “an entire Saturday,” Lidl would generate “4,004 new trips,” the consultants wrote.

At a meeting with Lidl representatives last month, local citizens raised several concerns, including traffic flow through the tricky area where Broadview intersects with Bear Wallow Road and Roebling Street.

The proposal shows the building standing on a grade 6 feet lower than Bear Wallow Road, with a retaining wall and 25-foot-deep landscaped buffers along residential streets.

The proposed store would have two street entrances, one on Broadview and the other on Bear Wallow.

Lidl’s conceptual plan depicts 174 parking spaces for its store and 34 designated for McMahon’s. The two businesses would share parking.

More than half the property, fronting Broadview Avenue, has commercial zoning.

To build its store, Lidl would need the town council to rezone about 1.35 acres, designated for residential use, along Norfolk Drive and Bear Wallow Road.

If approved, Lidl would compete with five other grocery stores in Warrenton.

After detailed town staff review, Lidl’s application will go to the Warrenton Planning Commission for a public hearing and a recommendation — probably this spring. The town council then will conduct another public hearing before deciding the matter.

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Ravzie · February 22, 2017 at 9:27 pm
I would like Lidl if it is as good as Aldi, but I'd really rather have Aldi and/or Trader Joe's here. Maybe one of them could go in the old Shoppers space in Gainesville????
MissB · February 21, 2017 at 3:40 pm
I think the focus of the article should have been on the revitalization of Broadview Ave instead of the minor traffic issues. Replacing that old motel with a bright new store is a good thing.
citizen observer · February 18, 2017 at 10:05 am
I'm not against the new store. I'm pointing out how one article focused on traffic while the other tried to hide it.
Rover 530 · February 17, 2017 at 11:40 pm
People...it's a food store. It replaces a no-tell motel that is not as 'glamorous' as it was in the past. The store offers basic food and household items at a discounted price. The Lidl business model has been successful in thousands of other neighborhoods throughout the world. It will do well in Warrenton. There is room for it in the economy of the area. Traffic will increase perhaps, but people already drive in and around the property. The supermarket business is very competitive. The stores will work this out among themselves via the free market. The winners may be the local consumer, the town and the county. Traffic worry here is a 'red herring' and the linkage with the Walker Drive proposal is another one.
citizen observer · February 17, 2017 at 3:57 pm
No slant?

This headline states the store will add 3269 vehicle trips to a busy road in a commercial area. Not really that big of an impact.

The Walker Drive headline was all about adding a bowling alley and movie theater to get people emotionally behind it. You had to read deep into the article to find that it also included a lot more residences and is expected to add 9000+ vehicle trips in an area with roads that are a lot smaller than Broadview Avenue.

Obviously the developers on Walker Drive bought somebody a good lunch to get that slant.
JohnG · February 16, 2017 at 7:41 pm
Jim Griffin you may be right but it may also be the wording chosen by the reporter. The traffic study is, I suspect, something Lidl may have been required to file with the application but I can't imagine a major corporation would voluntarily choose to submit so seemingly damaging a study as the one at issue.

I'll look at the application to discover for myself the answer to my own query. Thank you for your input.
Jim Griffin · February 16, 2017 at 6:34 pm
JohnG: The numbers come from Lidl's application. It is not anti-Lidl propaganda. The origin of the information is Lidl itself.
JohnG · February 16, 2017 at 6:29 pm
Another fallacy in the supposed expert travel study is that the claimed 3,000 to 4,000 additional vehicles would be occasioned solely by the appearance of Lidl grocery.

Are we to believe that these people would not ever drive on Broadview Ave/Route 29 if Lidl is not built? Where do they do their grocery shopping now? Richmond?

But build Lidl and suddenly 3,000 to 4,000 people will each day magically alter their established grocery shopping habits and begin to drive on Broadview Ave./Route 29

I'm sorry but I just don't believe the propaganda against Lidl. Something else is driving this specious conclusion regarding traffic.
Jim Griffin · February 16, 2017 at 5:02 pm
I detect no slant, only straight-forward reporting about what was submitted by the applicant.

When it is inference about which you complain, you are clasping to a thin reed of interpretation through your own eyes, not objective information.

The Emersons are fine people without an axe to grind. Recently lost Lou's Dad -- see the obituaries -- so your critique is ill-timed. Without having spoken with them it seems certain their personal views are focused elsewhere and are in no way manifested in the coverage here at this time.
TooTrue · February 16, 2017 at 2:31 pm
CrystalCoast is right about the selective slanting that goes on. There was once a time when we had both a movie theater and bowling ally here. Neither one made it in the long run and the Walker Drive Project's smoke and mirrors won't likely deliver them in the short term or sustain much positive in the long run. Homes in this area won't enjoy the same environment as when purchased.
CrystalCoastHokie · February 16, 2017 at 1:58 pm
I'm all for free market enterprise and competition which provides the consumer with hopefully lower prices or increased selections. However it would seem from my perspective that the reporter is slanting this story to infer that increased traffic in an already commercial area is bad for the town. I would echo other comments from readers that are surprised or maybe a better word disheartened that there is no editorial opposition to a huge shopping center /mall that will significantly adversely impact a quite residential area off of Walker Road and Lee Street. The increased traffic, light diffusion, crime, rodents, waste and runoff into our ecosystem etc. that come hand in hand with this type of planned development is non existent but problems seem much greater to more residents. I for one have been able to live very happily in my adopted town without movie theaters and bowling ally's.
TooTrue · February 15, 2017 at 5:44 pm
You are right again citizen observer, unlike the old times when he owned The Citizen, this site is known to favor the owner's friends, those that advertise with him and olde boy connections.
citizen observer · February 15, 2017 at 5:07 pm
Funny how another store on Broadview Avenue is portrayed by a headline about traffic. Yet a town center proposal with lots of stores and residences on Walker Drive, that will also generate lots of traffic, is headlined about maybe getting a movie theater and bowling alley to distract from the reality.
JohnG · February 15, 2017 at 1:43 pm
Sounds like a hit job by the other grocery stores to tamp down potential competition. Broadview Ave/Route 29 already has Giant, Safeway and Harris-Teeter along the route, so how much of a problem would some additional traffic be? After all, if Lidl is as good as reported, some of that traffic will be going to Lidl instead of to Giant, Safeway and Harris-Teeter.
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