SHEPHERDSVILLE – In the early 1980s, a major discount store attempted to bring a store to Shepherdsville.
At that point, zoning and construction issues stopped the project.
But in 2013, plans to build the first Wal-Mart in Bullitt County cleared its initial zoning hurdle.
The Bullitt County Joint Planning Commission gave its unanimous support and sent a favorable recommendation to the Shepherdsville City Council.
Benjamin Robards III is seeking to rezone 25.43 acres from IG General Industrial and IL Light Industrial to B-1 Highway Business.
The property is located on Conestoga Parkway across from the Shepherdsville Government Center.
Attorney Deborah Bilitski of Wyatt Tarrant & Combs LLP said that Wal-Mart would be the proposed user of the property.
In her presentation to the commission, Bilitski said that a Wal-Mart with 190,000 square feet would be constructed and there would be three outlots available for commercial development.
Issues over variances and setbacks killed the original retail project over 30 years ago. On Thursday, the only question related to traffic issues.
Bilitski said the infrastructure in the Settlers Point Business Park was set up by Flynn Brothers during its development to handle both industrial and commercial traffic.
There will be some plans to install turning lanes into the property and she said a traffic light would be placed at one of the entrances. A flashing light would also be installed at the entrance of the government center to be activated when emergency vehicles, such as the fire department, is leaving the facility on a run.
Resident Gary Board inquired about the affect upon traffic at Conestoga Parkway and Adam Shepherd.
Bilitiski said she was not working on that particular project but that it was her understanding that the city is working with Flynn Brothers to have a traffic signal installed at that location. However, she was uncertain of the progress of those discussions.
Planners had no questions for the applicant or his attorney.
Wal-Mart official did not reply to a request for an interview.
For several years, the location of a Wal-Mart in Shepherdsville has been rumored. It would be the first to be actually located in Bullitt County.
The Hillview Wal-Mart is actually located just inside Jefferson County.
For Shepherdsville mayor Scott Ellis, it will be a great day when the doors finally open.
“This is very good news,” said Ellis, who didn’t expect any issues to derail the final rezoning approval by the city council.
Ellis said it has been a group effort which has been on-going for a couple of years.
Officials were looking at a couple of sites in Shepherdsville before settling on the Conestoga Parkway location.
“This is just the start,” said Ellis. “Wal-Mart will bring other businesses along.”
In establishing a stoplight at Adam Shepherd and Conestoga, Ellis said the plan is to realign the entrance into the Kroger shopping center to line up with the intersection.
When he was campaigning three years ago, Ellis said people wanted more retail and dining establishments. He said this is just one example of that campaign promise coming true.
“It’s all coming together,” said Ellis.
With financial problems apparently behind it, Ellis said Shepherdsville is now able to move forward.
“People want to go where there is excitement,” said Ellis, a day after it was approved for two 600,000-square foot spec buildings to be constructed soon in Shepherdsville. “There is energy in the air.”