According to City officials, the Edgemark/Chase presentation to Planning and Development (P&D) and City Council of the plans for a Chase Bank branch and drive-through facility at 2637 Crawford will not be on tonight's Planning & Development Committee agenda but will be heard on July 23. At that time, the requested zoning amendments will be discussed at P&D, and could either remain there or could go on to the City Council for "Introduction."
The bank branch is proposed for the site of the current shuttered Citgo station at Crawford and Grosse Point. Several drive-through lanes would also be built, along with parking, consuming most of the currently vacant lot on Crawford next to the Citgo station. Some existing trees and/or vegetation appears to be preserved, and the plans will have to involve both environmental remediation (the site currently has underground gasoline storage tanks) and stormwater detention.
Although zoning changes were adopted that permit multi-story, multi-use development on the Citgo site, the Chase plans present a one-story building albeit with a large peaked roof.
The proposed zoning amendments would convert the vacant lot from residential to a business district, and would also create a new subdistrict, to include the Sarkis restaurant and adjoining parking lot space, that would also permit drive-through uses as a special use.
While there is broad consensus that something replacing the shut-down gas station is a positive, neighbors of the project have expressed concern about hours of operation, lighting, and the difficulties of routing drive-thru traffic into one of the busiest and more high-speed intersections in Evanston. Some who were involved in the Central Street planning process question the zoning change for the Sarkis lots and the creation of a one-off business district lot to which the master plan does not apply.