By Dave Fidlin


A Rochester panel last week backed a technical document that serves as a first step in the potential arrival of Casey’s General Store to a high-profile spot within the village.

The Plan Commission on Jan. 3 recommended adopting a resolution that would incorporate changes into the Racine County Multi-Jurisdictional Comprehensive Plan.

The changes, if implemented, would reclassify a 2.3-acre parcel within the document at 2728 Beck Drive from a low-density residential to a commercial zoning designation.

The commissioners’ stamp of approval advances to the Village Board next week. Elected officials on Monday, Jan. 8, will decide whether to move forward with the change.

Casey’s application did not directly enter the equation of this week’s discussion, though it does sit in the foreground.

“This sets the stage for it,” clerk-treasurer Betty Novy said of the proposed change to the comprehensive plan.

Casey’s plans to build a gas station and convenience store near the highways 36 and 20 corridor cannot take place unless the Beck Drive parcel is rezoned. The village’s current low-density residential zoning for the parcel does not permit a commercial establishment on the property.

If the board does act in favor of the change to the comprehensive plan at Monday’s meeting, Novy said Casey’s application for its proposed 4,700-square-foot store will be taken up in February.

Casey’s plans for the parcel have generated discussion in recent months. When plans were first floated in November, concerns of how the business would impact nearby residential property owners surfaced.

Commissioners had their first comb-through of Casey’s plans at a meeting a month ago and reviewed some of the technical plans.

While the panel agreed the residential zoning has become obsolete in a section of the village that has been going through a metamorphosis, several officials bemoaned the gas station proposal because of the proliferation of similar nearby establishments.

Commissioner Mike Weinkauf, however, said he believed the proposal reflects a broader view of changes within Rochester.

“Our village is growing rapidly,’ Weinkauf said at the December meeting. “It’s probably the reason why another gas station is viable.”

Casey’s is making its foray into Racine County with several planned sites in various stages of development. The company has assumed an existing gas station in Waterford at highways 83 and 20 and also has submitted proposals in Burlington and Union Grove.

To see the full story from last week’s Plan Commission meeting pick up a copy of the Jan. 5 Waterford Post. The newspaper is on sale at retail outlets throughout the area. To subscribe to weekly delivery, click on the following link: SUBSCRIBE