Local News Post-Tribune

CP council OKs relocation of Pickletime, Anytime Fitness

By a just one-vote margin, the Crown Point City Council on Feb. 4 approved a special use permit to allow a 24-hour fitness center and indoor pickleball court facility at Merrillville Road and Summit Street.

The petition came to the floor with a 3-1 favorable recommendation from the Crown Point Board of Zoning Appeals. However, that wasn’t enough for three council members to think the location was inappropriate for the business, especially considering the concerns residents Cynthia and Philip Struebig, who live near the proposed development and raised about the potential impact of traffic on the neighborhood.

Council members Chad Jeffries, Zack Bryan, Robert Clemons and Andrew Kyres voted in favor of the permit, while Scott Evorik, Joe Sanders and Laura Sauerman voted no. With the 4-3 favorable vote, Muayad Musleh, owner of Anytime Fitness, and Larry Hall, owner of Pickletime, will relocate their Crown Point business within two separate buildings at 1100 Merrillville Rd.

Because the businesses are recreational/entertainment establishments, city ordinance requires a special use permit. City code will also require the businesses to add a buffer zone, such as fencing and landscaping to minimize the aesthetic impact on the neighborhood.

In other action items, the council approved a special use permit to allow Rober Slepcevich to operate a health and wellness business, NWI Drip Spa, in an I-1 industrial zone located at 1776 E. North St. and also a “personal services facility” to operate next door at 1780 E. North St.

A special use permit was also granted to operate a “luxury” used car dealership at 1326 N. Main St. The petitioner, Dena Alahmad, will be required to keep no more than 25 cars on the approximately half-acre lot nor perform any outdoor car detailing services.

CEDIT funding allocated

The council gave final approval to an ordinance establishing a capital improvement plan for its portion of County Economic Development Income Tax (CEDIT) funds along with an accompanying salary ordinance to fund a future economic development director position. The pay range is $57,000 to $87,111 per year, according to the ordinance.

The city has allocated the funding for a variety of purposes between 2024-2025, including local road and construction projects, incentives to bring new business to the city, “personal” services (i.e., engineering), paying off a general obligation bond, and helping fund the expansion of the South Shore Railroad.

Of those items, approximately $730,000 is allocated to pay off the bond, with $600,000 tabbed for construction projects, $250,000 going toward economic incentives, $275,000 for personal services and $133,370 to the South Shore. The Rebuild Crown Point fund is allocated $50,000.

The city is in the process of identifying various road, construction and economic development projects. Updating the city’s comprehensive plan is among the projects planned, according to Mayor Pete Land.

Jim Masters is a freelance reporter for the Post-Tribune. 

Jim Masters , 2024-03-10 18:34:28

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