On split vote, Prairie Village council approves car wash plan for State Line

The vacant office building next to Panda Express on State Line had been slated as the site for a new Slim Chickens restaurant. It will now become a car wash.

A vacant office building that had been the planned location for a new Slim Chickens restaurant will instead become a car wash.

A rendering of the Auto Spa Car Wash planned for State Line Road.

On a split vote Monday, the Prairie Village city council approved plans to turn the property at 7930 State Line Road into a Tidal Wave Auto Spa.

The owners have agreed to install an insulating wall around the property to abate noise pollution in the surrounding neighborhoods. The car wash will be required to operate no earlier than 7 a.m. and no later than 9 p.m.

One homeowner spoke strongly against the plan Monday. David Wooldridge said the layout of the proposed car wash would send traffic back on the site too close to homes that abut it, causing noise issues.

But the car wash proposal did not generate the same level of organized opposition that the restaurant plan did a few years ago.

Councilmember Terrence Gallagher, who lives close to the site, said he was conflicted about the project and had concerns about some of the noise issues. But, he said, after nearly a decade of looking at the vacant former Campfire Girls building, he was ready to see something get done.

“I’m tired of looking at an empty building on that property,” Gallagher said.

Still, Gallagher was one of five councilmembers who voted against the rezoning request. The seven councilmembers who voted in favor of the request were Chad Andrew Herring, Ron Nelson, Andrew Wang, Brooke Morehead, Dan Runion, Courtney McFadden and Ted Odell. Councilmembers Jori Nelson, Serena Schermoly, Tucker Poling and Shiela Myers joined Gallagher in voting against it.

The Slim Chickens developer had spent months working with the city and neighbors to earn approvals for the needed zoning changes for the restaurant plan back in 2015. But nine months after the city granted the rezoning request, the developer informed the city it was halting efforts to bring that project to fruition.

A rendering of the proposed car wash.