Lifehouse Church received the approval it needed from the city of Hastings to move into the Paul Spady Buick building.

The Hastings City Council approved a conditional use permit during its regular meeting Monday to allow Lifehouse Church, which met at the Imperial Mall from 2006 until the mall’s closure at the end of May, to use the Paul Spady Buick building at 2850 Osborne Drive East as a church and for associated accessory uses.

Development services director Don Threewitt said the city is using a new application process in which applicants include planned future uses for the property. This is intended to save time and money, so the applicant does not need to reply for additional conditional use permits if the intended use was approved as part of the original application.

Lifehouse pastor Brett Mackey thanked Threewitt and city staff who helped the church work through what has been a long process.

“We are currently at a temporary location right now, trying to work through that, trying to get in this place as soon as possible while obviously following codes and everything that staff has recommended,” he said.

According to conditions established for the permit, the project is anticipated to be a phased project. No phase shall be occupied until all life safety improvements specific to that phase are completed and approved by city of Hastings officials.

Any and all subleases shall be reported to the development services office prior to lease execution. Subleases will be individually approved administratively based on compliance with city code and occupancy compatibility for the primary use and will require a site plan description and use.

The uses are conditionally approved subject to administrative approval prior to initial use, submittal of site plans and other documentation in compliance with all applicable state of Nebraska regulations and city of Hastings codes at the time of use: Daycare use; short-term, emergency housing; limited, medium-term transition housing; storage without rental fees for the primary user and approved subleases only; sublease to the existing Polaris dealership; including limited motor service repair; sublease to the existing car was; sublease to a coffee shop; sublease to a fitness service; sublease to leadership training services — potential uses listed in the church’s application to the city.

Councilman Ted Schroeder commended Mackey and his congregation for a “pretty tremendous” effort to stay at the mall.

“The determination they had is tremendous,” he said. “This is going to be a great use of (the Paul Spady) building. I walked through the building with them. It’s going to be a tremendous situation moving out north there.”

Mayor Corey Stutte also said he was happy Lifehouse was able to find a new home.

“I know you’ve been on a long road here for the past, probably longer than a year but the past six months especially,” he said. “I’m happy we’ve gotten to this point and you’ve gotten a new home. Hopefully we’ll see the other tenant out there (Napoli’s restaurant) find a new home at some point as well.”

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