Aldi is going forward with plans to tear down its Roeland Park store and build a new, slightly larger one in its place.
The final development plan calls for a facility to replace the Aldi at 4801 Roe Blvd. with a model that has improved aesthetics. The design change follows a corporate mandate to update all of its grocery stores, such as the Aldi in Shawnee.
The Roeland Park council agreed to the plan during its Monday workshop and offered no objections.
“Substantial reinvestment in the site should expand available shopping options and improve site accessibility and drainage,” according to an Oct. 1 city memo.
The new store will be 8,000 square feet, nearly 10 percent larger than the existing store. Start dates for demolition and construction of the new building are not yet determined.
Jennifer Jones-Lacy said Aldi has plans to place a mural on the retaining wall behind the new store to meet the city’s requirement for 1 percent of the new development to have art on it.
Sam Malinowsky, an engineer for Aldi, said the company is considering other art options instead of the mural, such as building a statue on an island in the parking lot. Foliage would probably mask a mural on the retaining wall, he added.
Councilmember Michael Poppa suggested to Malinowsky that the Aldi engineering team seek feedback, guidance and perhaps a recommendation from the Roeland Park arts committee, to ensure that Aldi’s art is “in line with the rest of the vision for Roe Boulevard and the surrounding areas.”
Councilmember Tim Janssen raised concerns about the privately-owned driveway between Aldi and Burger King, citing its rough shape with potholes.
City administrator Keith Moody said Burger King owns most of the property but, “generally speaking,” owners will share maintenance costs. City codes enforcement only occurs when the condition of the road causes risks to public safety, he added.
The final development plan will be on the consent agenda for final approval at the Oct. 22 council meeting.