More approval by a governmental agency came speeding down the straightaway for the National Corvette Museum Motorsports Park last week.
After hearing Wendell Strode, executive director of the museum, explain that the museum has “gone above and beyond” with its plans, the City-County Planning Commission gave its OK to a detailed development plan Thursday for the motorsports park.
The park will open during the National Corvette Caravan in late August after construction is completed on the 184-acre site at Grimes Road and Porter Pike, just across I-65 from the museum.
The detailed development plan was approved with six conditions of approval, most of which will have to be completed before the park can be opened, including:
- Construction of a left turn lane from Porter Pike into Grimes Road
- Reestablishing some portions of a required vegetative buffer along I-65
- Extending an earthen berm to reduce noise for neighbors
- Recording a plat to consolidate the tracts of land within the park
- Approval of a variance for a proposed sign along the interstate
- Showing proposed parking with the application for a building permit
Strode is concerned about the requirement for the vegetative buffer, unsuccessfully asking that it be eliminated since “we’re certainly hoping that we can move forward without having to have a motorsports park over there that no one can see from I-65,” he said.
As far as the berm to cut noise for neighboring properties, Strode said he felt like it was never required in the original language in the binding elements, only that the park wouldn’t result in a big hike in noise over that already made by I-65 traffic. A noise study, he said, ultimately showed that the park wouldn’t increase the current noise levels substantially. Excess soil was available, so the berm will be built anyway, he said.
“We feel like we have gone above and beyond,” Strode said, pointing out that a concrete wall and buildings will also help keep noise levels down.
The planning commission eventually passed the detailed development plan with all the conditions in place, but Steve Hunter, executive director, said that amendments might be offered to the existing binding elements later.
BG Daily News
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