A Pearland property owner said was stunned by a 3-2 City Council decision on Jan. 28 blocking his plan to build a gas station and convenience store on Pearland Parkway adjacent to Independence Park—especially because the project had been approved once before.
Adam Malik was seeking a conditional use permit, which is required for any new gas station in city limits, for a second time for his property at 3201 Pearland Parkway at the intersection of John Lizer Road. His first permit for the site was approved in 2017, but it lapsed before he could break ground on the project.
“I do not know now if I will develop it into something different or sell the property,” Malik said. “I spent tens of thousands of dollars to get the design really nice and to be family friendly.”
Malik said he had been working on plans for the site since 2014 and said he hired designers and architects to make the site more appealing, a process that included adding a cafe with a drive-through to the convenience store.
A vote on the project in December was postponed to give Malik time to make requested changes to the site plan to help with traffic flow. The CUP process gives the Planning and Zoning Commission and City Council the ability to put more requirements on a project. It also allows public input on what will be built.
“Because of this process, we’ve negotiated many more improvements than otherwise would be there, so we could vote it down tonight or a Burger King or McDonald’s could go in with a much less [strict]site plan,” Council Member Tony Carbone said.
According to the city, 72 residents filed comments against the permit, and most members of P&Z also voiced opposition to allowing another gas station. According to data compiled by the city, there are 15 other gas stations in a 2-mile radius of the proposed site.
“This could happen without the gas pumps. … I voted for it before, but it’s hard for me to go against 72 people who really don’t want it,” Council Member Trent Perez said. “Bear in mind, he pulls the pumps out, he can go in there by right. … You may end up with something far less attractive or far less useful to the community.”
Malik said he could not be profitable without a gas station. His options now include applying again in six months, or building almost any other business that would not require a CUP and would not hinge on input from city officials or public comment.