Tractor Supply approved for Northgate

Published 9:13 pm Wednesday, November 24, 2021

Tractor Supply will locate its second store in the city at the entrance to Northgate Commerce Park following City Council’s unanimous approval to rezone property off of Nansemond Parkway at the entrance to Northgate Commerce Park.

Council, following a Nov. 17 public hearing, approved rezoning 4.3 acres of a 31.79-acre site from heavy industrial to general commercial zoning for the store, which will go next to a gas station/fast food/convenience store development that received council’s rezoning approval in January.

“This is a great addition to the Northgate area,” said Councilman Roger Fawcett.

The store would be Tractor Supply’s second in the city. The first opened in 2013 on the corner of Pruden Boulevard and Northfield Drive in the Virginia Regional Commerce Park.

The Northgate store would be just over 21,000 square feet and have a one-story building with outdoor sales and displays, along with more than 60 parking spaces. It is expected to employ about seven to 10 employees and operate from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.

The applicant, Wendy Fulton of TKC CCLXIII LLC, on behalf of the property owner, McGowan Group Inc., proffered to put in a shared entrance with the already approved retail development next to it.

“I think it will complement the property that we’ve rezoned on the corner with the convenience store and drive-through,” Mayor Mike Duman said, “and bring more retail to an industrial park.”

Interim Director of Planning and Community Development Robert Goumas said the store would not face Nansemond Parkway, but rather, would face the internal street in Northgate.

Goumas noted that Nansemond Parkway, due to its status as a special corridor overlay district, requires more stringent setbacks, along with architectural and landscaping standards. He said the planning department has advised Fulton that she may need to put in more landscaping and visual buffers that the outside activities at the rear of the store may generate that would be visible to Nansemond Parkway.

Brian Lane, an agent on behalf of the project developers, said it looked forward to locating its new store in Northgate.

“Tractor Supply has enjoyed its business relationship over on Pruden Boulevard with the city,” Lane said, “and as such, they’re looking forward to a positive vote … to expand its business on this side of Suffolk.”

The two developments at the entrance to Northgate come just as Amazon prepares to open its robotics fulfillment center in Northgate early next year.

A proposed rezoning for a nearby development across from Northgate that would bring 204 apartments is on hold after the Planning Commission voted 6-1 at its Oct. 19 meeting to recommend denying the request.

Spokeswoman Diana Klink said the city “anticipate(s) the submittal of new information in advance of council’s Dec. 15 meeting.”