Chardon city planners kept their promise Monday to promote economic development and second-floor apartments on Chardon Square as they approved the demolition of a house just off the square to make way for a future restaurant.

The city Planning Commission unanimously approved the demolition of the home at 102 North St. to allow for the creation of parking spaces and an outdoor patio for a potential restaurant that will front Chardon Square.

The application was brought by Joyce and Anthony Perrico, representing Abruzzo Investments LLC., who own the building at the north end of the square, 107 to 111 North Hambden St.

Prior to approving the demolition, planners voted to approve a lot consolidation for two parcels for the parcel, just north of North Hambden Street (Route 6). The combined parcels totaled 0.17 acres.

The lot consolidation set the stage for the discussion of the house demolition.

Steve Yaney, city economic development administrator, told planners the city has outlined two processes for granting demolition of buildings within the city’s designated historic district. One allows for a more expeditious approval, while a second is a more involved process requiring notifying the public through notices in newspapers.

In this case, Mr. Yaney said, while the house does lie within the historic district, it has no historic value. He said it has been renovated and seen additions multiple times. “It’s not an architectural marvel,” Mr. Yaney said.

He said the plans for the property by the Perricos is consistent with the city’s plans for promoting economic development and apartments above businesses on Chardon Square. That goal was set out in a comprehensive plan that city officials approved earlier this year.

Mr. Yaney said because of those factors, city staff believed the shorter process applies and the planning commission could give immediate approval to the plans.

Mr. Perrico told the commission that the house has already been completely stripped and is prepared for demolition at this time.

He said the plan is to provide the outdoor patio for the future restaurant on the property as well as limited private parking. He said the parking would be limited to tenants of two apartments above the business as well as the business’ employees. He said patrons would not be permitted to park there.

Mr. Yaney there would likely be no more than seven parking spaces given the plans for landscaping and setbacks. Mr. Perrico said a privacy fence will be erected to separate the parking and patio area from the residence to the north. “There are better things to come in that space,” Ms. Perrico said of plans for the future restaurant.

She noted that workers have already improved the back wall of the building, cleaning it and painting.

Joseph Koziol Jr. started his career in journalism in 1981. He joined the Solon Times in 1992 and covered the city of Solon for 10 years. An award winning reporter, Mr. Koziol has been covering Geauga County since 2012.

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