By BRIAN SMITH
Roger Williams Chrysler Jeep Dodge is scheduled to move its Weatherford location after a zoning change approved by city council members Tuesday night.
An 8.45-acre site at 1102 Washington Drive was rezoned C2 Commercial/Interstate in anticipation of the move, The site is just east of the intersection of Texas Drive and I-20. It is also just east of a proposed entertainment complex expected to include an eight-screen movie theater with eat-in-your-seat capabilities, a bowling alley, an arcade and other amenities.
Shea Kirkman, with Frisco-based Peloton Land Solutions which is representing the dealership, said the facility will be split up into two parts with new car sales on the western side of the facility and a used car lot further to the east. Some drainage issues with a channel on the site will be fixed with city cooperation. Kirkman said some landscaping and benches will be installed to make the area more attractive.
Customers will have to enter the facility from Washington Street, as no access will be provided from the I-20 service road, Kirkman said. Kirkman said the dealership wants to be a good neighbor to a number of nearby single-family dwellings.
“The Williams family is committed to Weatherford and will do what it takes to be a good neighbor,” Kirkman said. “We’re going to be sensitive to our neighbors with our lighting at night at the dealership, which is much different than lighting even just a few years ago. We don’t want to be a beacon in the night with our lighting.”
The inside of the dealership will also include a café and a kids play room, Kirkman said. With the expansion and new site, Kirkman said the dealership is expecting to bring in between 20 to 30 new employees to add it its 80 existing employees.
Kirkman said designing of the new facility should begin sometime this fall with construction commencing in the first half of 2014.
Mayor Pro Tem Craig Swancy said it is difficult to imagine the Williams dealership without its massive flagpoles on Fort Worth Highway. Kirkman said he was uncertain whether the flagpoles would make the move.