The Dayton City Council discussed a request to put a Kwik Trip gas station at the old Marathon site along County Road 81 at its March 23 meeting.

The council was updated on the programming at the Dayton Activity Center.

Kwik Trip requested to rezone the site at 19000 County Road 81 for a gas station, convenience store and car wash. Along with rezoning, the development plan and conditional use permit need to be approved by the council.

“In the process of this, they are improving the access to [County Road] 81 at this parcel with intersection improvements at 81,” City Planner Alec Henderson said. These improvements include shifting the access to County Road 81 to the east with a full intersection and turn lane improvements.

The existing buildings would be demolished. A sidewalk and pedestrian connection to the Dayton Park property to the north would be constructed. Landscaping would be added along the sidewalk to screen Kwik from the mobile home park.

The plans include the storefront facing the east with 10 fuel pumps and a canopy on the east side. The car wash would be located on the west side of the building, with access to the car wash from the north. The car wash would be operational from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.

The council expressed some concerns about the noise from the car wash that may become an issue for residents of the mobile home park located north of the private road to the car wash.

“It’s still loud all day and it’s really close to people,” Councilor Julie Gustafson said. She asked more about the screening.

Henderson said the Planning Commission recommended some type of natural screening and not a fence between the homes and Kwik Trip. Gustafson said she would approve landscaping if it helped block the sound. She wondering if landscaping and intermittent barriers, not a full fence, might help. The final plat plans from Kwik Trip will address the finalized landscaping plans.

City Administrator Tina Goodroad asked the applicant to explain how the car wash doors will work and how the sound from the blower might travel.

Dean George, with Kwik Trip, said the doors on the north side of the building would be the car wash entrance. These doors would be closed during the operation of the wash. They would only be open if someone is waiting to get into the car wash. “The door on the dryer side, the south side, will be open for the duration of the dry cycle,” he said.

Councilor Travis Henderson asked if the doors to the car wash entrance could remain closed until the dry cycle was completed. George said he would need to check on that.

The council tabled any action on the Kwik Trip proposal.

The council also received an update on the Dayton Activity Center and its programs.

Activity Center Coordinator Teresa Schmeidlin said her vision for the center is to build a recreation department that will eventually serve the city through innovative programming promoting healthy aging, wellness, personal growth, fun and a sense of community.

Some of the upcoming events that are currently planned at the activity center include the Ghost Hunt and Potions Lab Saturday, Oct. 30 and the Holiday Light Fest and Coat Drive (also the tree lighting) Saturday, Dec. 4.

Other programs currently happening are the Choose Your Own Activity Adventure for all ages, Wellness Starter Kits for those aged 55 and up, Aging Mastery Plan Book Club, chair and cardio dance yoga for adults in May, and the Step It To competition also in May.

“We are hopefully adding Marvelous Mondays this summer for six weeks,” she said. There would be several events on Mondays from July 12 to Aug. 16, including the Farmer’s Market in Cloquet Overlook Park in the afternoon and evening, live music at Elsie Stephens Park in the evening and a movie on the big screen at Elsie Stephens Park at dusk.

Gustafson said that the Monday events would be fun and that she was excited.

Schmeidlin said she is also starting a new program called Dayton 4 Life. This program is free for residents, and ideal for those approaching or just starting out in retirement. “It’s kind of built along the lines of a Scout program,” she said. “We are going to have all kinds of healthy aging things happening. You can earn merit badges for these things. And it’s going to have a yearly recognition of all the fun things they’ve done and accomplished.”

The Dayton 4 Life program will be based on the four pillars of life resiliency — mental, physical, social, and spiritual — while incorporating the dimensions of aging well from the Aging Mastery Program.

Another program she is starting is the Dayton Science Club, which is free for residents aged kindergarten to eighth grade. “I already have 30 kids signed up,” she said. The program is a subscription box-style theme where science activities are mailed out or made available for pick up at city hall for the program members. The membership starts with a special notebook and each kit contains instructions and most supplies.

The activity center is also available for rentals for families to come and rent the space hourly where kids can play and parents can work or just use the wifi.

In other action, the council:

HEARD from Doug Baines, member of the Planning Commission and Elm Creek Watershed Management Commission, regarding lakes conservation. He said the Diamond Lake DNR landing will be moving off the curve this year or next, allowing for better access and more parking.

APPROVED the final plat, planned development agreement for the French Lake Industrial Center newest building, where Graco Minnesota will construct a 463,536-square-foot manufacturing facility located just south of West French Lake Road and east of Brockton Lane.

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