Owner: Casa Dominick's redevelopment may start with retail expansion
The owner of Casa Dominick’s said work to expand commercial uses on properties that adjoin the popular bar and restaurant on Monroe Street next to the University of Michigan’s Central Campus is unlikely to begin until next year.
Richard DeVarti said the poor economy and some reworking of property lines and bank loans will delay any redevelopment on the block.
“Considering the way the economy is, it’ll probably be gradual over time,” DeVarti said.
City Council approved a planned-unit development amendment for the property this month. DeVartiÂ said he wanted to get the city approval so that he’d be ready to act when the time is right.Â
“We needed to go through this process for approval,” he said.
The restaurant, opened in 1960, is a student gathering spot located between State Street, the Law School and the Business School. It's known for its outdoor patio and sangria.
The PUD amendment folded four additional properties - including two on Tappan and one on Oakland - Â into one parcel for planning purposes, enabling different uses, such as additional retail space and a bed and breakfast, in the buildings.
DeVarti said the retail piece would probably be the first. Original plans called for possibilities like a small store or coffee shop.
He said no major changes are planned for the existing restaurant, except possibly the addition of retail space.
The PUD splits the properties into four zones, and allows only specific uses in each one. Two areas are allowed to have restaurants, residential, grocery, educational, beauty salon and office uses; one permits residential and hotel uses; and another allows artist studios and sales spaces.
The new PUD takes up 0.6 acres, while the old one was 0.1 acre.
The plan also mandates that the changes must take place within the existing buildings, unless additional construction is approved by the Planning Commission.
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