Fast food chains often open in proximity to each other. Gas stations typically oppose one another on corners. For a while, pharmacies did, too.
So it seems to be the case for banks as well.
Largo city leaders on Tuesday cleared the way for a proposed Chase Bank to be built near the intersection of West Bay Drive and Clearwater-Largo Road, adjacent to an existing Wells Fargo bank and a parking lot.
City commissioners approved an exemption to a two-story building height requirement that is part of the West Bay Drive Community Redevelopment District Plan, voting 6-1 with Commissioner Harriet Crozier in opposition at the city commission meeting Tuesday night.
Crozier thought there could be better uses for the undeveloped parking lot.
“I just think something else could have gone on that corner instead of a bank in front of another bank.”
The developer intends to submit plans including enhanced landscaping and to redevelop the existing parking lot, which is in front of the Wells Fargo bank and the Publix at the Pinellas Shopping Center, this week.
Plans are to build a 4,352-square-foot Chase Bank building that appears as two stories through the use of a facade transition line. The building will feature architectural designs to give the appearance of a two-story building, a pedestrian connection with Clearwater-Largo Road and enhanced landscaping.
Commissioner Curtis Holmes worried about drive through bank users creating more accidents exiting onto Clearwater-Largo Road.
“How many of those people are going to try to turn left onto Clearwater-Largo road,” Holmes said, citing the intersection danger. “You are going to give Largo Fire Department and Police Department job security they don’t need.”
Sign up for the free Largo Patch email newsletter to get updates about business, development and more news affecting your community.