By Alyssa Schnugg
The Oxford Planning Commission approved the site plan for a new Origin Bank to be built off University Avenue as part of the University Shopping Center.
The bank will be built on 0.4 acres of land on the north side of University Avenue, east of AutoZone and west of the UPS store, where Guest Reality Land Company and Oxford Super Tan are currently located. The building there now that houses two businesses will be demolished to make way for a 5,461 square-foot Origin Bank branch.
The building will be two stories and have two drive-thru lanes that will be accessed within the University Shopping Center on the north side of the property, and there will be no entrance or exit onto University Avenue.
There will be 13 parking spaces allocated for the bank, and more parking is available in the main shopping center parking lot.
With traffic along University Avenue being backed up at times, some of the commissioners questioned whether a traffic study should be done before the bank is constructed.
While a study would generally be required, City Engineer Reanna Mayoral said there was an oversight as to the size of the building and staff did not require a traffic study to be done. Traffic studies are required for banks that are larger than 4,400 square feet with a drive-thru. Original plans for the bank had the building size at about 3,000 square feet. However, Mayoral said despite the oversight, she did not feel a traffic study is necessary for the new bank.
“We don’t believe a study would show a negative impact on traffic or any mitigation requirements other than possibly the need to restrict access, which has already been addressed,” she said.
The commission also approved a special exception request to allow a bank in a Traditional Neighborhood Business district. Banks are allowed in TNB zoning if granted a special exception by the Planning Commission.