Conversion planned for historic church Zoning board gives tentative OK SOUTHWEST--Mount Airy * Woodbine * Taylorsville * Winfield

July 28, 1993|By Amy L. Miller | Amy L. Miller,Staff Writer

An historic church in Mount Airy will be getting a second life as an office building under plans tentatively approved by the town's planning and zoning commission Monday night.

M & M Limited Partnership has a contract on the former Ridgeville United Methodist Church at 108 E. Ridgeville Blvd., town planner Teresa Bamberger told the commission.

The developer plans to convert the old church, which closed in December, into office space. M & M also owns the Ridgeville Car Wash and a small building of offices at 104-106 Ridgeville Blvd.

"We are going to try and maintain the overall look of a church without people thinking that it is a church," said Tracy McPherson, a developer with M & M Limited Partnership. "We want to try and keep the structure the same so it has a very similar look and so there is a cohesive strip of uses" on Ridgeville Boulevard.

The properties are separate lots, but may be joined if the Board of Zoning Appeals doesn't grant M & M's request permitting a side yard parking setback of six feet.

"This is sort of a landmark," commission member Keith Gehle said of the old church. "My concern is that if you don't combine the two properties at this point, there will be no way to go back to what it was.

"I'd like to see the site plan work as one lot."

In other planning and zoning commission matters:

* Members conditionally approved a site plan for the Stauffer Funeral Home.

The family-owned funeral home chain -- which has establishments in Frederick, Walkersville and Thurmont -- has purchased an old home at 8 E. Ridgeville Blvd. and is building a 3,600-square-foot addition.

* The panel conditionally approved a site plan for the Mount Airy Bowling Lanes to build 12 tenpin lanes at the alley on Center Street. Commission members also approved an addition plat transferring 2,468 square feet of property from David R. Brinkley to Joseph Rineer, the bowling alley owner, for nine parking spaces.

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