The Answer Man on WinCo plans

The old Kmart off Pacific Boulevard is to be razed to make room for WinCo.

The old Kmart off Pacific Boulevard is to be razed. In the left background: Kohl's.

Whatever happened to the plans by WinCo Foods to open an Albany store at the site of the closed Kmart? It's still in the works. That's the short answer to the reader who asked me about it this week.

As luck would have it, the Answer Man was in when Cindi Tandy's email question arrived. And he turned to the city planning department for the latest.

It was in May that a report in the Albany Democrat-Herald said WinCo had filed a "land use application" for the Kmart site, vacant since September 2014. This was after the company filed for a change in the lot configuration last November. What happened since? Not much, apparently, but  things may be moving soon.

Here's what Melissa Anderson from the city's Planning Division told me Thursday: "Yes, WinCo submitted an application for a site plan review to redevelop the old Kmart site. They propose to demolish the existing building, scrape the site and build a new building with associated parking lot. The layout will be essentially the same as the existing site."

She added that the application was incomplete, missing "basic infrastructure plans" among other things. "It is my understanding that WinCo is moving forward and we expect to receive the additional information soon. We look forward to working with the applicant to complete the land use review."

Also, once the application is complete, the planning staff will upload it to the community development page on www.cityofalbany.net, where the pulic can easily check it out. (hh)

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