Dollar General – Multi Parcel

Highway 540a, Lakeland


Lakeland-Hwy 540a was a Neighborhood Activity center designated commercial trade area located on a busy highway in south Lakeland. Over the past two decades, single-family residential in the area grew rapidly. One 20-acre site was in the center of the trade area was dedicated to commercial use, but it was far too small to meet the demand for goods and services in the area.

A Publix, CVS, and Walgreen’s entered first and took most of the commercially entitled land. Bordering the commercial zone was a 9-acre former citrus farm. This adjacent land could allow for commercial trade area expansion.

The biggest problem was the site had already received two previous use-change denials by the County Commission. A re-zoning would need the support of the surrounding residents, churches, and county staff.

Development Solution

Palmetto understood the importance of open and honest discussions with all parties involved. We listened to the publics’ concerns and focus our intention on solving objections and getting needs met. After meeting with area residents, we approached county staff and worked closely to facilitate their needs on the final design of the property. We were successful in offering buffering elements to neighbors along with their desired design standards. For neighboring churches, we focused on traffic solutions and flow. For the county staff, it was pedestrian safety, walkability, and exterior building design.


  • Through commitment to each of these groups, we were able to garner full staff support for the project’s approval.
  • After all considerations, collaborations, and design changes, the site was presented to County commission though two public hearings.
  • The outcome was a full approval of the land use change. Multiple other developers had tried to re-zone this site in the past with no success.
  • After the re-zoning we submitted the site to the Dollar General.
  • We prepared all submission documents and gained their approval for the full build-to-suit project
  • Design and construction commenced, and the site opened for business