Carrie Rengers

Used car lot a possibility for northeast corner of Elm and West streets

For three long years, Howard Ricketts says he’s been waiting and hoping to attract a bank to his property at the northeast corner of Elm and West streets, which is a block north of Central and West Street.

“It was an old bank building, and I was always hoping another branch bank would go in there,” Ricketts says.

The building has been home to a couple of banks, including the Bank of the West, which expanded across the street a few years ago.

Since then, there have been some other tenants, including a vape shop most recently.

Now, Ricketts is seeking a conditional use permit to allow a car lot on the property for a potential tenant.

“We’re in the process of doing that, and if it goes through, he’ll open the lot,” Ricketts says.

He says about four other parties have been interested in opening car lots there in the last few years.

Though the property is zoned correctly with limited commercial zoning, a car lot needs a conditional use permit to operate.

“It costs extra money to go through the planning commission and get it approved,” Ricketts says.

He kept waiting for a bank but finally decided he’d waited long enough.

“I just decided I would try to get a tenant that was ready and willing to go.”

The issue goes before the planning commission Thursday and then would need to be approved by the Wichita City Council.

Reach Carrie Rengers at 316-268-6340 or crengers@wichitaeagle.com. Follow her on Twitter: @CarrieRengers.

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