The Van Alstyne City Council, as the Zoning Board of Adjustments, recently approved a variance request, following a public hearing, that will allow a new Domino’s Pizza to open in the city.


The variance request allows the company to use the masonry requirement percentage on the sides and back of the building, which would allow the developer to construct the front in an aesthetic style in keeping with the other Domino’s stores either under construction or already open for business.


“From city council approval to construction completion takes about six months before the building can be open for approval,” Bill Wastoski, who went before Van Alstyne City Council Tuesday night to get approval so he can begin construction on a retail strip center, said.


Using that timetable, Wastoski believes that the anchoring business, Domino’s Pizza, could be up and running as early as this summer.


The developer, Paga LTD, is based in Pottsboro, Wastoski said. Paga LTD started a project that includes expanding Dominos Pizza into five or more future locations, including Van Alstyne, Whitesboro and Pottsboro. Domino’s has been doing well in the stock market, Wastoski said, partially because it has kept up with and incorporated use of the latest technology. The Domino’s Pizza app not only allows people to order their food choices by phone but also to track the order, whether the purchaser wants home delivery or pickup.


The new locations, including the one going into Van Alstyne, have convenience windows.


“The window is not a drive-through order window,” Wastoski said. “There will be no menu board there. It is a convenience window.”


Purchasers can still go inside the store and place their orders, using the menu board there, he added.


The strip center, which hasn’t yet been given a name, will be anchored by Domino’s Pizza. And Wastoski said the company is open to other types of businesses. The complete strip center will encompass up to 10,000 square feet, with Domino’s Pizza taking up about 2,500 square feet of that. Other possibilities are plentiful and include nail salons, a mobile phone repair location, a physician’s office, pharmacy, dental and even another restaurant concept. The owners would be open to a FedEx or Kinkos print service, office services and such, as well.


Parking will comply with city requirements, including handicapped parking spots, with employee parking being separate so as not to interfere with customer parking.


Paga LTD will begin pre-leasing immediately and looking for consistent, long-term usage, offering 5-year leases to start with.


“Strip centers have changed dramatically, and there is a tremendous demand for small centers like this,” Wastoski said. “We call it the Amazon effect. That online business has closed several power shopping centers. There are still some power centers, but the industry has changed dramatically since 1997. It’s driven our ability to build these tracks. You can’t Amazon a pizza, but what you can do is use technology to be more efficient about ordering that pizza.”


Wastoski said demographics drive things like this.


“All the new homes coming to Van Alstyne, and we also look at business and population in the extra-territorial jurisdiction and the school enrollment and growth,” he said.


He said the company also looks at the ratio of men-women in population, knowing that 60-90 percent of “your shoppers are women” and that played into picking Van Alstyne for this strip center.


This strip center, including Domino’s Pizza, will be on the east U.S. Hwy. 75 service road at Texana Street.


“We want to be very progressive, a bit ahead of the growth, and offer convenience as a factor,” Wastoski said, calling it a “first class shopping center.”