A Popeyes restaurant with drive-thru will be moving into the former Schoop’s location at 3501 Lake City Highway, Warsaw.

Arc Design Resources requested three variances from development standards Monday from the Warsaw Board of Zoning Appeals. The purpose of the variances is to allow a 5-foot setback closer than the required 25-foot front setback, allow a 3-foot setback from the required 10-foot landscape buffer and allow a 1-foot setback from the required 10-foot landscape buffer.

According to Assistant City Planner Jonny Latsko, “Commercial-3 zoning districts are intended to be arterial commercial districts, meaning they accommodate businesses that require large spaces and extend beyond local uses as well as providing service for traffic passing through the city.”

Landscaping standards exist to aid in ecological balance, mitigation of excess noise, glare, heat and dust, delineation of space and uses, and beautification. The previous land use, Schoop’s, did not conform to these development standards, he said. The requested variance and proposed site plan are similar to the existing site.

The parcel is a triangle shape that presents unique difficulties for developing within the landscaping and setback requirements set by the ordinance, Latsko told the Zoning Board.

It is the opinion of the planning department that the Zoning Board could look favorably upon the request, he said, due to the unique conditions of the location and the intent of the C-3 zoning district.

Zoning Board President Tom Allen and board member Tammy Dalton expressed some concern about the traffic flow for the property. Dan Smith, board member, said that property’s been used for some time for restaurants and he didn’t think there were too many traffic accidents there.

“This looks like it’s going to be a bigger place than we had in the past,” Allen said, noting the challenge of the ingress/egress of the property onto Old 30.

When Allen asked Latsko if the planning department was comfortable they weren’t going to add to a potential traffic problem, Latsko said, “The requested variances don’t necessarily change the impact of any of those traffic concerns.”

Ryan Swanson, with Arc Design Resources, said Arc was the civil engineer for the project and represented the “owner/operator of a franchise that owns a few stores from Fort Wayne all the way up into Wisconsin.”

On the traffic concerns, Swanson said that will be improved. “The circulation for the proposed plan will basically allow – we’re going to tweak this a little bit to make sure there’s adequate width – but it’ll allow for more of an ingress, then going around the store and then an egress. So right now you don’t really have that,” he said, adding that it should make for better circulation of traffic.

“Essentially, we’re just looking to redevelop the closed Schoop’s Hamburgers with a brand new building basically,” Swanson said.

The drive-thru will be a double drive-thru, and Swanson said all the parking codes were met.

“We’re pretty excited about it,” he said.

The closest Popeyes is Mishawaka, he estimated.

The Zoning Board granted the three variances as requested.

The board also approved a request from Derek McGrew, for Verizon Wireless. He petitioned for a special exception to allow a wireless communication facility in an Industrial-2 zoning district at 2104 Biomet Drive.

The proposed design is a 149-foot-tall monopole. The proposed structure is not within the half-mile distance eligible for co-location, Latsko said. The applicant agrees to allow other providers to attach to the tower and intends to construct the tower for the maximum licensed providers in Indiana.

The Federal Aviation Administration conducted an aeronautical study and revealed that the structure does not exceed obstruction standards and would not be a hazard to air travel to the Warsaw Municipal Airport, he said. Airport Manager Nick King requested lighting be affixed to the tower due to its proximity to the airport.

The planning department recommended approval for the wireless communication tower.

There were no remonstrators to the petition.

McGrew said they were proposing a monopole in the Airport Industrial Park, north of town, just south of the airport. He said he did his research to make sure the monopole wouldn’t be in the flight path of the airport. He said Verizon was agreeable to adding the lighting as King requested, even though the FAA doesn’t require it.

“We are building it for the four licensed providers in Indiana, which these days are Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile and Dish Network,” McGrew said.

Also approved by the Warsaw BZA were:

• OrthoPediatrics requested a variance from development standards to allow deviation from facade requirements for an addition in a Commercial-3 zone at 2850 Frontier Drive, Warsaw. The existing land use is residential.

The petitioner’s addition is planned to have 225 feet of facade, with architectural panels matching the existing building. Other appearance-focused design elements, such as accent colors at the corners of the addition, would be used. The addition would be used as a warehouse.

Due to the context of the site and its neighboring proximity to an Industrial-2 district, the opinion of the planning department was that the Zoning Board could view the variance favorably.

• Ricardo Saldivar requested a variance from development standards to allow a 3-foot setback (as opposed to the required 6 feet) from the northern property line in a Residential-2 district at 513 N. Ellsworth St., Warsaw.

The neighboring parcel is a parking lot owned by Zimmer and the houses in the neighborhood have a variety of setbacks.

The recommendation by the planning department was that the case could be viewed favorably.