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Greencastle BZA approves plans for bank on Indianapolis Road

Wednesday, August 2, 2006

The construction boom currently taking place on Indianapolis Road in Greencastle just grew a little larger.

Tuesday night, members of the Greencastle Board of Zoning Appeals approved two separate variances for First National Bank to construct a new facility just to the west of its current location at 1140 Indianapolis Road.

East of the bank, work is continuing on a new Gas America station, located on the northwest corner of the intersection of Indianapolis and Round Barn roads.

City Planner Shannon Norman agreed the area has been experiencing a lot of growth this summer with several projects moving ahead.

She said building permits have been issued for Gas America and workers are currently putting in the foundation for the gas station.

Across the intersection, dump trucks and backhoes have been busy moving dirt for a new First Financial Bank to be constructed just west of Pat's Ace Hardware and Dollar General.

Both projects are scheduled to be completed by the end of the year, Norman said.

Officials with First National Bank say they want to be moved into their new 4,200-square-foot building by the end of the year as well.

Currently they lease space from Dr. Steve Kissel whose office is located just to the east of the bank, however, they own the empty lot just to the west -- located on the south and west sides of the computer store and H&R Block.

Bank officials are planning to construct a single-story, brick exterior building on their lot and move out of the space they lease from Dr. Kissel. The new building will front Indianapolis Road with the main parking area behind the computer store, or just west of the current bank drive-up window.

According to site plans approved by the BZA on Tuesday, there will be one entrance only and a separate exit only for the bank on Indianapolis Road. Additionally, there will be two combination entrance/exits onto Avenue B (located behind the bank) and a third exit only, for a total of five ingress/egress points for the entire property.

Board members voted unanimously to approve two requests for First National -- one for a development standards variance for entrance/drive separation requirements, and another for a variance to reduce the amount of landscaping normally required for projects in the General Business District.

Board members agreed with bank officials that having too many trees and shrubs on the south side of the bank property along Avenue B would be a safety issue for drivers trying to see to pull out of the parking lot.

With both variances in hand, project officials say the next step will be to start on architectural plans for the new building, to be followed by reviews from both the city and the state.

The Board of Zoning Appeals meets at 7 p.m. on the first Tuesday of each month at City Hall.

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