Apparently, the Zoning Board of Adjustment doesn’t like the idea of a waterfront AAA auto service/retail center at 1601 S. Columbus Blvd., either.
PlanPhilly reports that AAA’s appeal to have their permits reinstated, after L+I revoked them back in March, was recently denied by the ZBA. The future of the vacant lot just south of the former Foxwoods Casino site is surrounded in uncertainty.
You may recall that it’s a confusing story about how it got to this in the first place. Permits were granted one day before the new Central Delaware Waterfront zoning overlay came into effect, causing confusion what land uses are allowed east of Columbus Blvd. and what procedures are needed to obtain the permits. Here’s how PlanPhilly explains it:
It turned out that even though the use itself wasn’t prohibited at the time the overlay was filed, it was required to go through a Plan of Development approval with the City Planning Commission. And the applicants hadn’t done that.
AAA then went through the Plan of Development review, figuring that if the proposal got the Planning Commission’s approval, the permit issue would be a moot point. But the Planning Commission didn’t approve the Plan of Development. And then L&I revoked the permit
Which brings us to this current appeal. The ZBA ruled against the AAA plan, even though they claimed to have “vested rights” in the property due to knocking down a few buildings on the site and clearing the land.
AAA will appeal the decision to the Court of Common Pleas.
It’s certainly another waterfront story to follow. We know the Delaware River Waterfront Corporation is busy developing the trail from Washington Ave. Pier down to Pier 68. There is also that not-so-little future development at the former Foxwoods site, which is now (again?) owned by Bart Blatstein.