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McClure granted rezoning

August 20, 1998|By JULIE E. GREENE

Hagerstown Councilman J. Wallace McClure said Thursday he could move his two businesses out of downtown by October.

The Hagerstown Board of Zoning Appeals on Wednesday granted McClure permission to change a nonconforming use at 816-818 Pope Ave. from a photographer's office to a piano workshop, piano showroom and offices, said Matt Davis, a city planner.

Zoning appeals board members Fay Smith, William C. Wantz and Brett Wilson voted 3-0 to grant permission, Davis said.

McClure said he still needs to secure a loan to buy the Pope Avenue building.

McClure, who has complained about merchants moving from the downtown area, said he began looking for a building that would enable him to expand his businesses long before he became a council member in June 1997.

He has rented space at 63 E. Franklin St. for McClure's Piano Shop and 'Round Town Movers since March 1989.

At a council meeting earlier this year, McClure complained that too many merchants were moving out of Hagerstown's core to new quarters on the edge of the city.

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McClure said the downtown store space he rents won't remain vacant for long because he will leave it in good shape.

"I think it's a very exciting opportunity," McClure said of the move.

It will allow him to better represent the South End since he will be working there, McClure said. McClure lives in the North End on Woodland Way.

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