New liquor store causes great concern for Whitestown residents

WHITESTOWN, Ind. - Dozens of residents in the Maple Grove and Stonegate subdivisions in Whitestown are not happy about a new liquor store planning to go in next door.

"We don’t want that anywhere near any of our kids and neighbors," Maple Grove resident Terry Lutz said. "It would just be better to have it somewhere else and not in our neighborhood.”

Payless Liquor is currently on the only committed tenant for a new strip mall expected to be built on Whitestown Parkway on the land just west of Maple Grove Boulevard. The retail center would be less than 600 feet from Lutz's home, she said.

"You know there are so many other things we could use and you could put in there," Lutz said. "I’m not for it,"

Dozens of neighbors have reached out to the Whitestown Town Hall through letters and Facebook posts expressing their concerns about the liquor store.

Greg Long, who has two young children, said he doesn't want his kids exposed to the liquor store on the a daily basis. He also said there are two nearby schools and feels the influences that are associated with a liquor store are not good for the area.

"My daughter’s going to be in middle school next year and if she ever wants to ride her bike to school she’s going to have to ride right by the liquor store," Long said.

However, Whitestown leaders hands may be tied. The land has been zoned for general business use since 2007 and that code allows liquor stores.

“(The planning commission) can’t deny an approved use to that zoning.," Whitestown Assistant Town Manager Tanya Sumner said. "That’s exactly what Zionsville did to Walmart and they went through a very expensive and lengthy lawsuit because of it  that same thing would likely happen to us if we denied it, we would likely be sued.”

“I don’t think that’s right," Lutz argued."I think we should all have a voice to say yay or nay."

The plans for the development are scheduled to go before the Whitestown Planning Commission Monday night and Sumner said the vote will be tabled for 30 days to allow the builder and owner of Payless Liquors to talk to residents.

CBS 4 was unable to reach developer and owner of Payless Liquors for a comment.

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