Planning Board gives OK to retail space conversion

City continues search for consultant to assess propane tank installation
By Ben Holbrook | Oct 14, 2016

Belfast — Planning Board members approved unanimously Oct. 12 a change in use permit to convert a storage area in a building on Front Street into retail space or a professional office.

The building, sited at 33 Front St., to the left of Purple Baboon, is home to a technology company and certified public accountant, building owner James Ross said. He said the storage space he is looking at converting is on back side of the building, adjacent to the Harbor Walk.

While someone approached him about using the 384-square-foot storage area for retail space, Ross also requested the space be available for a professional office. He envisioned a small insurance company might want to use the space.

Ross said he does not have any interest in a restaurant moving into the building.

Planning Board members had few issues with the potential conversion beyond a question from member Margot Carpenter who asked if Ross would add any more lighting to the building. Ross said he did not intend to install more lighting, noting there are two nearby lights along the Harbor Walk, but would consider such action if the rear of the building is too dark.

City Planner report

City Planner Wayne Marshall told Planning Board members he is still looking for a firm to complete an independent analysis regarding a proposal from Waldo County General Hospital to install a 30,000-gallon propane tank. Two firms Marshall approached about the work declined to do the analysis, Marshall said, and he is uncertain when the city will find a qualified consultant.

He said he does not anticipate the board will continue review of the hospital's application at its next October meeting, or at the first meeting in November.

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