City gives final approval to Kwik Trip in high-traffic area
Alderman has concerns over traffic, gas station density

By Matt Masterson - Freeman Staff

 June 14, 2015

WAUKESHA — A Kwik Trip planned for one of Waukesha’s busiest traffic areas got the final go-ahead from the city Wednesday evening, but one alderman was concerned the new station may make travel in the area even more difficult.

The city’s Plan Commission voted 5-1 in favor of a final site plan and architectural review for the Kwik Trip, to be built at the southwest corner of Golf Road and North Grandview Boulevard.

In March, the commission granted unanimous preliminary approval to the store’s site plan, architectural review and conditional use permit, under the condition that staff and developers work to address some aesthetic issues before the project returned for final approval.

Because it contained a permitted use, Community Development Specialist Jeff Fortin said, the Common Council does not need to vote on the project and, besides some final building permits, the city’s role in it is finished.

However, Waukesha County is requiring a traffic study be conducted in the area, and the project could be modified at that level to allow for any necessary traffic improvements.

Despite the approval, not everyone on the commission agreed with the decision.

Alderman Peter Bartels, whose district encompasses the area the new Kwik Trip will occupy, said he received several calls and emails from his constituents opposing the plan.

He cast the lone dissenting vote against the project during Wednesday’s meeting.

While some mentioned an overabundance of gas stations already in the area — including another Kwik Trip on North Grandview Boulevard and a Mobil on Silvernail Road — Bartels said every message he received raised concerns about traffic volume.

“That whole area by the overpass and Silvernail (is one of the busiest in the city),” Bartels said. “(At) 4:30 p.m., 5 p.m., 5:30 p.m., it is terrible, I want to avoid it right now, and they are going to put another traffic light out there according to the traffic study.”

To handle the traffic from GE Healthcare, Country Springs Hotel, Willow Run Golf Club and the West Wood Health & Fitness Center, which are all located near the Kwik Trip site, Bartels said the area already has six traffic signals from Northview to Golf.

If the county traffic study requires yet another, it would bump the total to seven.

“It is just a concern everybody had, and I had as well,” Bartels said. “I didn’t receive one call or have anybody come up to me with any support for the project. So I had to go with what the residents wanted.”