CASA GRANDE — A new Mexican food restaurant will make its case for a driveway that allows both left and right turns on Cottonwood Lane at Thursday’s Planning and Zoning Commission meeting.

Riliberto’s is planning to build a 2,764-square-foot restaurant with a drive-through at the southwest corner of Pinal Avenue and Cottonwood Lane. The company wants to have two driveways onto the property, one that opens onto Pinal Avenue and one that opens onto Cottonwood Lane. The company has already agreed to make the Pinal Avenue driveway a right turn-in/right turn-out-only drive, similar to the driveway across the street at Jack in the Box.

The company would like to allow traffic to turn both right and left in and out of the driveway on Cottonwood Lane. City staff at first raised concerns about a full access drive on Cottonwood due to the traffic there, but after some discussion and a traffic analysis is recommending the commission approve the request for an all-access driveway on Cottonwood.

In an attempt to alleviate some of the traffic backup on Cottonwood, city staff and Riliberto’s agreed to shift the restaurant farther to the west and use the alley to create a longer drive-thru lane.

The company also provided the city with a traffic impact analysis to show how traffic would move in and out of the restaurant’s property onto Cottonwood Lane. In the study the company estimates that 20% of the traffic to the restaurant would have to make a left turn on Cottonwood to enter the property and 22% of the traffic leaving the restaurant would make a left turn on Cottonwood. The restaurant would be open 24 hours a day.

The study also points out that the drive-thru lane would start near the Pinal Avenue driveway, which should entice drive-thru customers to use that driveway instead of the one on Cottonwood Lane.

The commission will also consider:

  • A request from Lucid Motors to consolidate multiple lots into one for its new factory at Thornton and Peters roads.
  • A zone change from general business to garden and light industrial on 1.96 acres at the northeast corner of Cottonwood Lane and Thornton Road for a storage yard for Haskins Electric.
  • A request to subdivide a 3.72-acre lot at Florence Boulevard and Camino Mercado into two lots.
  • Approval of housing product designs for Mission Royale.
  • Approval of a model home sales complex in Tamaron.
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