The Berea Planning Commission unanimously approved a development plan for Hyster-Yale to expand its manufacturing facilities on Menelaus Road.

Plans include a 171,017 square-foot building addition on 3.48 acres near the intersection of Menelaus Road and the Berea Bypass. An additional parking area is also planned. Earlier this year, city and company officials broke ground at the construction site months after four homes and several trees were removed from the site.

Planning Commissioner Mike Barnett asked how many employees the new facility would house, at which point Hyster-Yale officials noted that number is yet to be determined. Officials noted the development plan approved Tuesday is Phase I of a two-phase project, in which associates could potentially be added during Phase II.

The planning commission also unanimously approved a variance for over 224 additional parking spaces along Menelaus Road. The variance involved making the new parking spaces the same size as existing ones.

After the project was approved, Planning Commission Chair Betty Olinger said the new building is a positive sign for Berea. “Obviously we’re going to have additional people coming into work, and that is an exciting thing,” Olinger said.

In other business:

• Codes Enforcement Administrator Amanda Haney noted the city has fielded responses to an RFQ sent to solicit bids for writing the 2020 Berea Comprehensive Plan. Bell Engineering, Bluegrass Area Development District, Community and Economic Development Initiative for Kentucky, and the Kentucky League of Cities have all submitted bids. Haney said she is planning for an 8-month process to complete the comprehensive plan, but hopes it will end up taking less time than expected.

• Olinger thanked and congratulated Codes and Planning employee Robin Adams for her work with the commission and the city, noting Adams will be moving on to become the Berea City Clerk in early February. (City of Berea)

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