LAKEWOOD - Now that the former Firestone Auto Center has been torn down in Lakewood, Olive Garden officials will need to finalize its site plan.
On Monday, Charles Smith, Lakewood building inspector, said Olive Garden officials are scheduled to appear at the Wednesday, July 18, Lakewood Planning Board meeting to discuss the site plan for the restaurant. Smith said Darden Restaurant officials, the owners of Olive Garden, are mailing him construction documents for him to review prior to the meeting.
Smith said after the Planning Board meeting and a review of the documents, a construction permit may be issued. He said, during the last conversation he had with Olive Garden officials, they indicated ground breaking to occur in about five months. David Wordelmann, Lakewood mayor, asked if that means construction will start sometime this fall and Smith said that appears to be the case.
In the foreground, a small pile of debris is all that is left of the former Firestone Auto Center in Lakewood. Darden Restaurants, who purchased the property from Simon Properties who operate the Chautauqua Mall, are planning to construct an Olive Garden in the location later this year.
P-J photos by Dennis Phillips
In October 2011, Darden officials attended a Lakewood Planning Board meeting to discuss the preliminary site plan for the Olive Garden Restaurant. During the meeting, Neil Terwilliger, Darden Restaurants site development manager, said the restaurant company, which also owns the Red Lobster in Lakewood, will tear down the former Firestone building to construct a 7,357 square-foot Olive Garden restaurant. Darden officials purchased the land from Simon Properties who operate the Chautauqua Mall.