Dollar General files design plan for Hwy. 51 & Tiger Dr. store

Published 7:21 am Wednesday, July 13, 2022

Dollar General has made application with the City of Batesville Code Office to appear before the Planning Commission at its July 25 meeting to present a site and design plan for review. The retailer recently purchased part of the vacant lot at the northeast corner of Hwy. 51 and Tiger Drive.

The site and design plan, contingent on the rezoning of the property, will give city officials their first look at conceptual plans for a Dollar General store. The company is aggressively building stores in Panola County, and across the region.

The lot was used for various activities and events by the South Panola School District, so much that many locals believed the property was owned by the district. The school board, with no apparent appetite to acquire the land, passed on the opportunity and owner Larry Montgomery sold a portion of the lot to the retailer.

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Currently zoned for multi-family residential use (apartment complex), the property will need to be rezoned to commercial before Dollar General can proceed with building plans. City officials are not expecting much opposition to the rezoning request, but are anxious to see the design plans, specifically the proposed entrances and exits for the store.

Panola Partnership CEO Joe Azar said this week the news of Dollar General’s intent to move forward with a location in north Batesville was another sign of a growing retail economy in Batesville, noting that “dirt is being turned” all over town.

“With Jack’s nearing completion and Delta Car Wash well underway on Highway 6 it’s easy to see the business activity picking up in the city,” Azar said. “There are some concerns about the proposed Dollar General location, but I’m sure those details will be worked out in a way that is best for the citizens of Batesville.”
Azar was referring to concerns about traffic flow at the intersection of 51 and TIger Drive, one of the busiest in the city during the school year. There is no signal light at the intersection, but Batesville Police have patrolmen on site mornings and afternoons directing traffic and easing the congestion caused by school drop offs and pickups.

City officials seem to be in agreement that all entrances and exits should be on Hwy. 51 and not onto Tiger Drive. 

The Planning Commission will meet at 5 p.m. at City Hall on Monday, July 25 for review of the design plan. That board recommended the rezoning at a previous meeting and a public hearing was set for Aug. 2 at City Hall (3 p.m.)  The Board of Aldermen will then vote on whether to grant the rezoning request.