Austin Landing cinema, hotel clear hurdle

Plans for a 12-screen, upscale multiplex cinema attached to two full-service restaurants and a 108-room extended stay hotel are set to go before Miami Twp. trustees after being recommended by the township’s zoning commission.

The commission voted Tuesday night in favor of a $14 million-plus plan for the subsidiary of a Mexican-based luxury cinema. It also gave the nod to plans for a four-story Staybridge Suites, a project estimated to cost $12 million.

Both projects, which combined are expected to employ up to a 135 full- and part-time workers, are set to go before trustees for approval next week.

The cinema, Cinépolis USA’s first Midwest location, and the yet-to-be-announced restaurants will be the 142-acre mixed-use complex’s main entertainment component that developer RG Properties President Bo Gunlock said is “something we’ve been working on for a very long time.”

The plan calls for 52,750 square feet to be occupied by Cinépolis USA while the restaurants — each 6,200 square feet — would be side by side on the site’s south end, with both of their patios facing Penny Lane and Austin Landing’s park to the east.

The cinema/restaurant site is proposed for 3.84 acres north of Field & Stream nearest Interstate 75 and immediately south of Austin Landing’s parking garage. The garage — which has hundreds of spaces — will supplement the proposed site’s 130 vehicle slots, officials said.

Traffic and pedestrian access were the main concerns expressed by zoning commissioners. They said the proposed complex will attract more traffic from Austin Boulevard.

Commissioners made their recommendation with the stipulations that the plan include a raised, colored and texturized pedestrian crossing on Penny Lane, as well as thick “planting beds, seating and other amenities” to help lead pedestrians to the proper crossing area.

Commission Chairwoman Karen Kreusch said “there is no natural deterrent” from crossing anywhere along Penny Lane and the construction of that type of crossing will improve safety.

The limited pedestrian access across the road will “help funnel people to the right place” while the raised crossing “helps control the speed of automobiles on Penny Lane,” said Kyle Hinkelman, Miami Twp.’s community development deputy director.

Traffic was also a concern for commissioners about the Staybridge Suites, which is proposed on 2.59 acres northwest of Kohl’s, and south of Kroger and The Hilton Garden Inn.

The proposal revised an earlier plan to reroute Kohl’s Access Drive, the main north-south road through Austin Landing. The current plan also includes a traffic signal on that private road and Landing Way, the east-west entrance to Austin Landing off of Ohio 741.

Because of the traffic signal, the Kohl’s road will have to be approved later by the commission. At that time, the applicant will need to address permanent traffic markers, “traffic calming” measures — including a raised pedestrian crossing — and a letter from RG Properties stating its responsibility for installing and maintaining the traffic signal, according to the commission’s recommendation.

The hotel will have an indoor pool, a cabana, a guest laundry, a business center, a fitness room, a fire pit and a courtyard, and it will accommodate pets, officials said.

Its exterior will include stone and brick, Hinkelman said. And it will have a “more urban” quality to it than others in the chain to fit in with Austin Landing’s village to its southwest, said Doug Steinke, president of S + S Management and Hospitality.

“You will probably not ever see another Staybridge Suites like this one in the United States,” he said.