Development of Sale Barn could include Sam's Club

A new sign appeared Tuesday at the intersection of Amity Road and Dave Ward Drive at the former Lewis Livestock Auction Co. site advertising Lewis Crossing Shopping Center, 400,000 square feet of “power center, shop space and outparcels.”

The potential developer is commercial real estate services company Collett of Charlotte, N.C.

Promotional materials online show major anchor stores such as Sam’s Club and Bed Bath & Beyond surrounded by smaller, unidentified outparcels.

The Log Cabin Democrat has followed the potential development of a Sam’s Club since rumors first began about a year ago.

Bryan Patrick, director of planning and development for the City of Conway, said the City has been in preliminary meetings with Collett for about three months.

Although the developer has put up a sign that says the shopping center will be opening in 2015, the former sale barn site is still zoned as I-3 or Intensive Industrial District.

“They’re still a few months away from requesting a rezoning,” Patrick said.

Potential site plans show total new construction of 441,871 square feet with the largest major anchor consisting of 135,580 square feet.

President and CEO of the Conway Area Chamber of Commerce and Conway Development Corporation Brad Lacy said the chamber has not been directly involved in the preliminary talks, but says any type of new retail will generate revenue for the city and offer more choices, locally and regionally.

According to Faulkner County assessor records, the property is divided into four parcels three of which are owned by members of the Lewis family or the Mary Lewis Trust and one that is owned by Conway developer Rush-Hal Properties.

Patrick said he is under the impression that the different parties are working together to redevelop the property.

Preliminary meetings, Patrick said, have mostly consisted of the city and developer “working out infrastructure issues.”

“Road improvements will be required,” he said.

Once Collett finalizes their plans they will make more official submissions than the artistic renderings that appear online, Patrick said.

Patrick anticipates the developer to apply for a rezoning ordinance in late spring or early summer.

“It looks very likely that it’s going to happen,” Patrick said.

(Staff writer Michelle Corbet can be reached by email at michelle.corbet@thecabin.net or by phone at 505-1215. Send us your news at www.thecabin.net/submit)

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