A request from Fareway Stores Inc. to rezone a residential lot to allow development of a meat market was turned down by the Des Moines Plan and Zoning Commission on Thursday.

The request now goes to the City Council.

Last summer, Fareway purchased land at 2716 and 2718 Beaver Ave. that previously had been occupied by a bank. The Boone-based grocery chain has said it planned to open a Fareway Meat Market, which typically offers a fresh meat counter, dairy products, wine, craft beer and other products, at the site.

Fareway had originally proposed cutting an egress into a portion of the median along Urbandale Avenue to allow traffic headed west out of the meat market an easy way to exit the parking lot. City staff rejected the idea because the proposed opening would have been too close to one at the intersection of 41st Street and Urbandale Avenue.

Fareway then made an offer to buy a residential property at 2723 41st Place., raze the house and garage, and install parking with a drive onto 41st Place.

Neighbors expressed concerns about increased traffic on 41st Place including that of commercial trucks. They also opposed the loss of housing in the neighborhood.

“My objection to this new access onto 41st Place [is that] it is a very small street,” Elizabeth Seiser, a Beaverdale resident, told the commission. “Even if it’s just people in their cars … that is going to be majorly disruptive to this little street.”

A majority of people on the commission agreed with residents.

“This is not the type of commercial hub that needs to be expanding into residential areas,” Commissioner Abigail Chungath said. “This is more of a pedestrian-retail area. I think that development creep would continue and chip away at the character of the neighborhood.”

The commission, on an 11-2 vote, turned down Fareway’s request to rezone the residential property.

The issue now heads to the Des Moines City Council, where six of seven council members must approve Fareway’s request for the parcel’s rezoning to change.

Also Thursday, the commission:
  • Approved a request to rezone 4.3 acres of the Southridge Mall site to allow construction of multifamily housing for low-income people who are 55 and older.
  • Approved a site plan for the construction of a private service airplane hangar with passenger terminal and offices at 6213 S.W. 28th St. The hangar would be owned and operated by Signature Flight Support.