Parking could later be an issue, however

The Taft Planning Commission gave the go-ahead to a proposed amusement business on Kern Street Wednesday night.

The commission voted 5-0 to approve a conditional use permit for Double Bogey Mini Golf at 518 Kern Street.

The applicant, Sean Wray, told the commission that business will include a game room and party area in the front and a 9-hole mini-golf course in the open area at the rear.
Before approving the CUP, though, the commission had a few questions for Wray.

Commissioner Bob Leikam asked if Wray had looked at other locations, particularly on Center Street.
Wray said he had, but didn't find a suitable location. A vacant office supply business o the 800 block of Center is much larger, Wray said, but it would require installation of a fire sprinkler system because it is over 5,000 square feet.

Parking is another issue.

The business has no access to off-street parking, and that could create future issues.

The staff report accompanying the CUP request said staff discussed the issue with Wray and he has been directed to inform customers that they aren't supposed to use the parking lots either at Jo's Restaurant or at the Country Corner Plaza, the two businesses surrounding Double Bogey.

If customer parking causes "an undue burden on parking demand" the city could require mitigation or submit the problem back to the planning commission for review.

Wray said the business will target a younger client base in the 5 to 15-year-old age group with game center in the front with several 19-inch television screens and rented game consoles.

"The local kids are my main audience," Wray said. "I want to give them something to do."

He said he wants to open as soon as possible.

In other business:

• New planning commissioner Shannon Jones was seated on the commission. She was appointed by the Taft City Council a month ago to replace Shawn Sutherland.

•Heard a presentation of the city's downtown area and the challenges facing it along with a list of suggested remedies from Taft College student Hadley Pitman. She presented a PowerPoint on a project she completed over the summer for an economics class at TC. Her presentation was well-received and Commission chairman Ron Orrin asked for a copy of it.