Plans to build The Ruckus in MidTown Wauwatosa have reached a new stage.
The Wauwatosa Plan Commission will vote Monday, Jan. 9 on granting a conditional use permit for the proposed restaurant to be built at 8334 W. North Ave., the longtime home of Tosa Gas.
The gas station opened in 1934 and was a fixture on the site for decades.
In addition to the vote on the permit, a public hearing regarding rezoning the parcel for commercial use will be held Jan. 17.
The common council will then take up both issues, most likely in February. The site is currently zoned for residential use despite being a gas station for several decades.
"It was non-conforming when it was Tosa Gas," Principal Planner for the city Tammy Szudy said. "Once it closed it could not be re-opened unless the zoning district changes."
The current plan is a revision of the original version submitted to neighbors in November. After that meeting, neighbors and city officials expressed concerns about the original plan and Scott Schwebel from Colectivo said his organization listened.
In a letter posted on the city's website as a part of the plan commission meeting agenda, Schwebel says Colectivo made significant accommodations to their site plan based on the feedback they received, including the demolition of the existing structure.
"The only unfortunate reality is to make these accommodations... we were not able to save the Tosa Gas building," Schwebel said. "Our redesign nods to the spirit of the gas station as we seek to reinvent this corner."
Among the changes proposed are orienting the seating and main entrance toward North Avenue, eliminating all open-air windows, decreasing significant seating along 84th Street and moving the "noisy mechanicals" on the roof to the south and west for noise mitigation.
The proposed hours of operation remain the same — 10:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.
The amended plan hasn't changed the minds of some residents.
"We would like to continue to express our opposition to the proposed restaurant called Ruckus at 8334 West North Avenue," neighbor Allison Ryther said. "We have serious concerns about the safety of this intersection and the amount of children that could potentially be visiting this location."
Ryther cited a traffic and parking study presented by the city in April 2015 that addressed pedestrian safety at North Avenue intersections, including 84th Street and North Avenue.
Residents that live in the neighborhood surrounding the site have been exchanging emails with each other regarding the proposed restaurant and at least one is skeptical regarding Schwebel's statements.
"This project is going to affect the surrounding blocks," Brian Moyer said. "I think it is disingenuous to say they are working with the neighborhood. They are not as concerned as we are because we live here."
The planners of the project are the owners of Colectivo, who are set to open a The Ruckus location at 4144 N. Oakland Ave. in Shorewood. The Ruckus is billed as a classic "neighborhood ice cream and burger stand" which will offer a small selection of grilled items, custom-made ice cream and housemade churros.