The shuttered Walmart on Blair Mill Road in Horsham will remain closed at least a while longer.
The former anchor of the Village Mall had been the site of choice for a as proposed by locals involved with the Speed Raceway indoor electric go kart racing franchise. But, on Tuesday, the Horsham zoning hearing board voted unanimously to deny the application “in its entirety.”
Following the decision, Travis Thompson, one of a half dozen partners who had planned to finance the project, said he was not sure if an appeal of the board’s decision would be filed. Thompson, who was present at the meeting, said he needed to sit down this week with the partners and evaluate it.
"We’re disappointed. We’re local guys," said Thompson, president of Ivyland-based Suburban Marble and Granite. "We thought this would be a great use for the space."
Thompson said he and his partners have opened a location in Denver and plan to open seven total sites within the next five years. Thompson said three other locations are in development. And, when Speed Raceway began to face resistance from Horsham officials, Thompson said his team started looking at another site in Montgomery County. The other two prospective locations are in New Jersey, he said.
Township officials have said that the as proposed by Speed Raceway is not allowed under the shopping plaza’s zoning and suggested that the facility would fit better and would be permitted to operate in the township’s industrial or general commercial districts.
Speed Raceway representatives, including Thompson, disagreed and appealed the township zoning officer's May 1 decision to the zoning hearing board. Tuesday's ruling by the zoning hearing board, in essence, backed that earlier decision.