EYEWITNESS LOCAL NEWSZoning Board Approves Facelift Variance For Vintage Signs
from Eyewitness News Online
Reported by: Taisha Walker
Videographer: Taisha Walker
Web Producer: Bethany Simmons
Reported: Jul. 25, 2013 11:43 AM EDT
Updated: Jul. 25, 2013 1:02 PM EDT
Charleston , Kanawha County , West Virginia
The fate of Charleston's oldest store signs is no longer in question.
The city's Board of Zoning and Appeals has given the all-clear. That means two of three local businesses seeking a variance to renovate the signs outside of their establishments can now do so.
Zoning board members unanimously approved giving the Firestone Tires and the Fountain Hobby craft store -- both located on Washington St. -- a variance to update their decades-old signs. They said the signs are iconic, historic and need a facelift.
Mayor Danny Jones said renovating the signs will help to revitalize the stores, as well as the neighborhoods they surround. Community members say they couldn't agree more and are just ready to get the ball rolling,
"We've really been wanting to do these signs for the last couple of years," said Freeman Smith, project manager for Architectural Graphics, Inc. "There's a lot of detail and a lot of work here to do to these and to save them."
Smith and his Nashville, Tennessee based company will spend four weeks revamping the tire stores two neon signs.
"As you come down W. Washington St. that is the first thing you see, so for us it's gonna define the revitalization of the West Side," Stephanie Johnson, executive director of West Side Main Street said of the Fountain Hobby sign.
Johnson said she anticipates the Fountain Hobby project will cost $5,000. her organization will give the store a $1,000 grant. Mayor Jones said he'll help the store come up with the rest of the funds, even if he has to tap into his contingency funds.
The owner of the third store, Budget Tapes & Records, will go before the zoning board August 22 to present a design.
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