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Sunday, May 1, 2016

Yogurt shop gets BZA variance OK

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Progress continues on the Green Apple Frogurt yogurt shop as Van Hyberger and Dennis Opel of Roberts Construction do concrete work on the old gas station site at 306 E. Washington St. in Greencastle. [Order this photo]
Green Apple Frogurt has received the green light for lighted signage at the new yogurt shop under construction at 306 E. Washington St. in Greencastle.

The Greencastle Board of Zoning Appeals unanimously approved the development standards request for lighted signage on the north and east sides of the shop, located at the southwest corner of Washington and Locust streets.

Property owners Shah Shoaib and Amy Heller are developing the self-serve yogurt shop on property kitty-corner from City Hall on a site that formerly housed the Phillips 66 and Clody's Marathon gasoline stations and garages over the years.

The variance was necessary because illuminated signage is not permissible in the central business district.

The petitioners agreed to illuminate the cabinet-style signage only during business hours (expected to be 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily).

The signs on the building will each be 13 feet long and three feet high.

During discussion Tuesday night at City Hall, it was noted that the nearby property likely most affected by the lighted signs would be the residence of Jim McMillan at 307 E. Washington St. (northwest corner of Locust and Washington).

Both the petitioners and city officials were uncertain whether McMillan had actually received certified mail notification of Tuesday night's BZA meeting (it is possible, city officials said, that the property in question is owned by a bank or loan company which received the notification).

Thus, approval of the variance was made contingent upon verification that McMillan had been properly notified of the requested variance.

Shah said he has spoken to McMillan about the project since construction began, and the longtime Greencastle resident had no objection to it, he said.

An independent venture, Green Apple Frogurt will employ four full-time workers and three part-timers, Shah said.

He expects the construction project to be finished next month, but told the BZA he might not open until sometime in February when it is warmer and DePauw University students have returned to campus from Winter Term.

"A lot of people are very excited about your yogurt shop opening," City Attorney Laurie Hardwick offered.

"I'm excited, too," Shah said.

He explained that the idea came to him after reviewing the monthly credit card bills of his daughter, an Indiana University student in Bloomington.

"I kept seeing 'Red Mango,' 'Red Mango,' 'Red Mango,' 'Red Mango' ... I said, 'What is that?'"

His daughter told him he needed to go see for himself, and Shah visited the relaxed atmosphere of the Red Mango yogurt shop in Bloomington.

Shah said he "liked the concept," which involved customers filling their cups with yogurt and choosing from some 40-50 toppings, ranging from candy to fresh fruit.

Shah, who for eight years has owned and operated the Clark station just across the street from the yogurt shop site (along with the Marathon station in Cloverdale), said he is tackling the project "because I love Greencastle."

Friends have questioned the project, he said, noting that yogurt shops typically are "only successful in upscale neighborhoods."

But Shah decided he wanted to do another project in Greencastle, and when he realized there was no room to expand the Clark station, he opted for the abandoned lot on the opposite side of Locust Street.

Zoning Board members Paul Sanders, John Phillips and Jeff Sigworth voted in favor of granting the variance. BZA members Kathy Ferrand and Donnie Watson were absent.

In other action, the board also agreed to conduct its monthly meetings on the first Tuesday of each month, beginning at 6 p.m. instead of 7, for the remainder of 2011 and all of 2012.

City Attorney Hardwick and City Planner Shannon Norman were also on hand for the 30-minute meeting at City Hall.

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Kitty or Catty-Caddy, maybe SouthWest?

-- Posted by macvrod on Thu, Nov 3, 2011, at 8:23 AM

I think this is a great idea :) I think I would enjoy taking my children here, and if offered the right selections, could be a healthy alternative to other snacks on the go. Looking forward to it!

-- Posted by SMEEBS on Thu, Nov 3, 2011, at 11:26 AM

I hope it will be kept cleaner than the

Clark Station. I had to ask them to clean

the pump so I could read it.

-- Posted by Voter on Thu, Nov 3, 2011, at 12:07 PM

Did anyone check the soil for contamination before putting an eating establishment on the site?

-- Posted by hobbes52 on Thu, Nov 3, 2011, at 1:34 PM

Nice to see that corner cleaned up although I hope they have more than yogurt. I miss that coffee shop that was in the old JC Penney property and would love to see a coffee shop downtown.

-- Posted by mickhamblen on Thu, Nov 3, 2011, at 2:57 PM

I hope it will be as good as Red Mango...but why not open a Red Mango?

-- Posted by girlmd on Thu, Nov 3, 2011, at 3:11 PM

I totally agree with "Voter"..the Clark station is nasty!! Have you seen the pop machine? Well, just anything in there? This yogurt shop will definitely have to be cleaner than the station in order to keep afloat...

-- Posted by howdiduknow? on Thu, Nov 3, 2011, at 3:23 PM

I'm wondering if they'll sell crack pipes,bongs, K-2 & other smoking accessories like the Clark station does.I'm sure they're all 'For Tobacco Use Only' though...

-- Posted by ProblemTransmission on Thu, Nov 3, 2011, at 4:43 PM

Thanks Problem,

I needed a new Bong and now I know where to get one.

-- Posted by DefiantToo on Thu, Nov 3, 2011, at 6:27 PM

I will give it a try when it opens up. Better than a vacant gas station eye sore.

-- Posted by BRDMN on Thu, Nov 3, 2011, at 8:32 PM

@ mick, In need of a good coffee shop? Right next door to where the yogurt shop is going. And to all you Debbie Downers, can you let them open their doors first before you pass judgement?

-- Posted by kbmom on Fri, Nov 4, 2011, at 8:16 AM

I'll have the plain yogurt with a side of K-2...can you just put that in my new bong please..THX!

-- Posted by uttersillyness on Fri, Nov 4, 2011, at 10:28 AM

Mick, Greencastle has 3 coffee shops: Blue Door, Treasures On The Square and Almost Home. How many more do we need. We even had one on the eastside of town but it went out of business.

-- Posted by kitkat3 on Sun, Nov 6, 2011, at 10:25 PM

I think we all should be excited that we are getting a yogurt shop in our town that will bring few more jobs to our city and instead of criticizing we should be welcoming it, that old gas station will be gone and we will have a new building that's what I heard from the city people. Amy Heller has lived all her life in Greencastle and she worked very hard to reach to that point where she is a part owner in this business, we should be encouraging her.

-- Posted by Jackiejohn on Mon, Nov 7, 2011, at 12:21 AM

While I agree its nice to have the old eyesoar gone....aren't there plenty of empty buildings that could have been used instead of building a new one?? Just saying.

-- Posted by J_Mason on Mon, Nov 7, 2011, at 10:48 AM

Are they tearing it down, or are they rehabbing the old building? Looks like they're working with the old building to me. Not only will that dilapidated building not be an issue any longer, but it's probably convenient for the owner to be able to check two of his businesses without having to drive.

As for the coffee shop in the old JC Penney...there's a bike shop there now (mine), and we sell coffee. True, it's bagged, but it's really good coffee (Jameson). The Blue Door is right next door to the new (future) yogurt shop. They have all kinds of coffee and pretty good food too, from what I hear. I'm glad to see more locally-owned places opening in town... canned, processed sameness from the big names gets boring.

Forget McDonald's, Arby's and such for a week and visit Treasures on the Square, Almost Home, the Putnam Inn, and Mama Nunz. Even better, visit them by riding a bike instead of driving.

-- Posted by PlatyPius on Mon, Nov 7, 2011, at 2:55 PM

Excited about a yogurt shop-better be smoke free and hope the quality of the product is good-it is a healthier choice-miss living up north where you could get it numerous places and it taste good. The Clark station has always been a problem-with all the new gas stations we have I can't believe it stays open-but what I just read above makes me wonder-i don't care if gas is cheaper there -I don't go there but, will try out the yogurt shop.

-- Posted by bam on Thu, Nov 10, 2011, at 7:16 PM

Am excited about the yogurt shop! Hope people will support it and it will stay open. I would highly recommend waiting until at least Feb. if not March or so to open so that people will be excited and go there right away and continue patronizing the business. Sonic could be a good lesson for the future owner. Check what time of year Sonic opened. It was in the winter if I recall and no one wanted to go then....and by the time the nice weather got here people were not excited any more. It did not stay open long. All those parking shelters, nice speakers and tables outside, much less the building, are just sitting there looking brand new and empty.

-- Posted by not a native on Sun, Nov 13, 2011, at 7:01 PM

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