Planning Commission approves Waffle House site plan

Published 12:26 pm Tuesday, June 15, 2021

One of the final hurdles to Oxford getting its first Waffle House was cleared on Monday.

The Oxford Planning commission approved the site plan for the Waffle House at Oxford Commons during the June meeting with little debate despite opposition to the restaurant’s location in the months leading up to the meeting.

Last year, the Waffle House site was approved along Ed Perry Boulevard between Highway 30 and Sisk Avenue. Since then, the restaurant opted to move south on Ed Perry and will now be located across from the new El Charro Mexican restaurant at the Sisk Avenue roundabout.

The restaurant’s new location drew opposition and criticism from residents in the Oxford Commons community. An appeal of the Planning Commission’s decision in March to approve a special exemption and a variance request by Waffle House was presented to the Board of Aldermen during the April 20 meeting. More than 60 names were attached to the appeal, citing potential traffic issues that could arise from the restaurant’s close proximity to the roundabout and the Highway 7 north exit. The aldermen ultimately upheld the Planning Commission’s decision.

During the discussion of the appeal, Alderman Janice Antonow requested when the final site plan was up for approval that it be moved to the public hearing portion of the Planning Commission’s monthly meeting.

“That concerns me a little bit, that there’s so much interest in this development that the public won’t have any way to review or add input into the site plan,” Antonow said during the April 20 meeting.

With the item moved to the public hearing portion of Monday’s agenda, no public comments were made in favor of or against the Waffle House when those in attendance were given an opportunity to speak by chairman Brian Hyneman.

The Planning Commission unanimously approved the site plan with the planning staff’s recommendations. Those recommendations are:

  • Provide a signed pedestrian easement for the section of sidewalk at the south end of the site that leaves the rightofway and enters the Waffle House property.
  • The owner, or owner’s representative, will be responsible for providing traffic control devices and/or personnel while the work to complete the water and sewer taps is being done.
  • Final staff approval of Storm Water report along with Operation, Inspection and Maintenance Plan.
  • Waffle House will be required to construct a left turn lane or other solution approved by City Engineering staff upon determination by City staff that traffic entering or exiting the Waffle House is negatively impacting the safe operation of the roundabout or Ed Perry Boulevard.

When speaking to the EAGLE earlier this year, Waffle House Real Estate director Drew Joiner said they expect the Waffle House to be built and completed within the next couple years.