Access Road to Plaza at SouthPark Approved

New street should be done by holidays, developer says


An access road that will link the Plaza at SouthPark with the two shopping centers to the west has been approved.

The Strongsville Planning Commission voted unanimously Thursday night to allow Visconsi Companies to build a 450-foot road that will run behind Ledgewood Square and connect with the driveway at the Borders Plaza.

Traffic will be able to get in and out using the Borders driveway -- it aligns with an entrance to SouthPark Mall -- or can continue west through the parking lot and use Falling Water Drive.

The aim is to alleviate traffic tie-ups at Royalton and Howe roads -- in particular, eastbound traffic that stacks up trying to turn left into the Plaza at SouthPark.

"It's really going to relieve a lot of  traffic at Howe and (Route) 82," said Lori Daley, the city's design engineer.

The cost will be borne by Visconsi, which developed the Plaza at SouthPark and holds easements on the property through which the road will run.

"The administration is very happy the Visconsi family has heard our cry," Mayor Tom Perciak said.

Not everyone is as excited about the plan. Zack Hoty, managing partner of Ledgewood Square, said Thursday he had no idea the access road was being considered until he read it on Strongsville Patch.

"Nobody has been notified. We're all kind of stunned," he said.

His concern: Even more traffic using the driveway at the Borders Plaza. Hoty said he had already been in contact with the city about addressing the traffic problems there, which will increase when Earth Fare opens next year in the former Borders store.

City Engineer Ken Mikula said the city is working with the Ohio Department of Transportation on a signalization plan to smooth out the flow of traffic in the whole I-71 and mall area on Royalton Road.

Motorists have listed that area -- and especially the driveway into the Plaza at SouthPark -- among their top traffic peeves in Strongsville.

"Obviously, we need another way to get in and out of there," City Engineer Ken Mikula said. "This is a great project."

The access road will run past Rosewood Grill and behind Petco and Bed Bath & Beyond, then head west behind Strongsville Superwash, Panera and Trivs, coming out at the rear corner of the Borders store. 

Greg Barrow, vice president of construction services for Visconsi, said work will start right away.

"Our plan is to have it in before the holidays," he said.

Mikula said Visconsi purchased easements for the access road when the company built the shopping center and always intended to add the access road, if it was needed.

The city responded to motorists' complaints this year by lengthening the left-turn lane for eastbound traffic into the Plaza at SouthPark, but it still often takes several signal cycles make the turn, backing up traffic on Royalton Road.

Jillian October 05, 2012 at 04:30 PM
Oh my, I can see all the little fender benders in the Plaza by Trivs, and what about the parking spaces for the barbershop, etc????????????????
lyn October 05, 2012 at 11:22 PM
I can't believe this got approved. Especially if there was already a concern expressed about the anticipated traffic problems in that Borders shopping center once Earth Fare opens. I hope if there is any way that the owners of Borders/Ledgewood Square can build a barrier, that they will do it to prevent this road from hooking up with their drive. I can't believe that the city is forcing a business to absorb another shopping centers traffic and thus negatively impacting their owns tenants business. The city should be fixing this problem, not dumping the problem in the lap of a private business. Bad move. I hope a lawsuit or injunction occurs. The city planners, council and mayor have really been piling up the bad decisions, in my opinion. Maybe some new blood is needed - I do like the lead that newbies Matt and Carbone have tried at times, but haven't they been met with resistance from the "good old boy club"?
lyn October 05, 2012 at 11:35 PM
As I look at the map, I'm wondering who uses the drive that goes behind the Borders Plaza, from Falling Water Rd. to that drive by Trivs. If its for deliveries, why not just block off the drive so the only place to go is to the rear of the buildings, and then no one can drive through from one shopping center into another, just to benefit the new shopping center?
lyn October 05, 2012 at 11:41 PM
This is going to be a real mess! When Borders was there, it was like dodgem in that parking lot at times - and traffic already backed up at the traffic light across from the mall. And, with a grocer, Earth Fare, going in there, more cars will be coming and going more often. I find it hard to believe that the city can force this on another business for the sole purpose stated of being to alleviate the traffic problem on a public road. Its the cities problem, not a private business' problem - and that business had nothing to do with creating the problem to begin with.
Terry October 06, 2012 at 11:14 AM
Ledgewood gets screwed yet again. Traffic off 82 bad enough now. What a bottleneck it will be as drivers will cut through Ledgewood then make a left into the Borders Plaza.
Mark Kylemore October 06, 2012 at 04:16 PM
Should provide some much needed relief. Thanks to the developer for being proactive.
Janice Justice October 08, 2012 at 03:12 AM
They knew they didn't have the ability to move the number of cars in and out of the area when it was built. Now they will dump traffic into a residental area. What an answer! Also, the developer may build the road, but we the tax payers will maintain it.
tom m October 08, 2012 at 12:51 PM
"the developer may build the road, but we the tax payers will maintain it." <<<---- you make it sound like thats the first time in strongsville history the city has maintained a road built by a devoloper
tom m October 08, 2012 at 12:56 PM
all those people flocking to earth fare at the same time with there 35 cent off coupon for tofu peanut butter
lyn October 09, 2012 at 01:29 PM
Who "owns" the road that is there now, that goes behind Borders Plaza, from Falling Water Rd. to the drive by Trivs?
M. Hill October 15, 2012 at 01:43 PM
An access road is fine, however, did it ever occur to our administration that an I71 interchange at Boston Road would alleviate a significant amount of traffic from 82 and Howe Road?


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