Lightsey’s to move to former bank building

OKEECHOBEE — Instead of money, checks, and receipts, a former bank will be giving out lobster, shrimp and seafood soon.

The Okeechobee City Technical Review Committee approved plans for Lightsey’s Restaurant to move into the former TD Bank office at 1506 S. Parrott Ave. Thursday.

The plan includes 8,279 square feet of inside dining, outdoor dining in the former drive-thru area, and parking on a parcel of 1.86 acres.

Planner Bill Brisson said the applicant made some changes to access off Southwest 15th Street. Another access point will be Southwest 16th Street.

The restaurant would require 102 parking spaces which includes five handicapped parking spaces. Some off-street parking will be allowed by the city.

Fire Lt. Phil Conroy said an exit door, location of the kitchen and a smoker were a concern of the fire department. He also mentioned concerns about a barrier for the outdoor dining area.

Administrator Marcos Montes De Oca said he appreciated the changes made by the applicant. “This is what I would consider smart development.”

The city council will consider an 18.6 percent reduction in parking for the project at a future meeting.

Some retail and office spaces are also planned for the building.

The staff report suggested traffic impacts for the restaurant would be less than the demand caused by the bank.

Owner Ray Arrants told the city committee earlier this year that he plans to have the building half restaurant and half retail. He wants to bring the display cases at the current restaurant. They must leave the Okee-Tantie Recreation area in July.

Charles M. Murphy is a staff writer for the Okeechobee News

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