Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Relocating Businesses Get Sign Approval, Historic District Commission Needs New Member

Two Easton businesses that are relocating got approvals to hang their shingles at their new locations Monday evening.

Champ's Corner, the restaurant and bar owned by former world heavyweight boxing champion Larry Holmes, is moving from Canal Street in Easton's Southside neighborhood back to the location of the former "Ringside" on Larry Holmes Drive in Downtown.

Easton Historic District Commission members look at
a picture of the "Champ's Corner" sign on Larry Holmes'
iPhone Monday evening.

After a brief discussion, the Historic District Commission approved the same sign that hung at the Canal Street location, with minor changes.

"If we could paint the raceway, I think it would be more appropriate," said historic consultant Christine Uhler.

The "halo" sign, which features lettering that is illumimated from behind, is considered to be appropriate for the city's historic district, but Uhler said the raceway depiction in the background was somewhat distracting.

Holmes, who admitted the sign has already been hung, agreed to have the sign painted to better match his building's terra cotta brick.

"I don't think that would mess up how it looks," he told the commission.

Holmes hopes to reopen the establishment as soon as possible, but will need to get plumbing and electrical permits to complete  necessary work, along with a certificate of occupancy from the city, noted codes department director Cindy Cawley.

"No public goes in there until you get your zoning permit," Cawley told Holmes.

The Game Gallery, currently located on the 200 block of Northampton Street, has fewer hurdles to overcome to reach their goal of relocating to 315 Northampton Street by the end of the month.

The shop also was granted approval for its planned sign Monday evening, though little comment was heard from the board.

The Game Gallery's new space is larger and the shop hopes to expand their offerings and also hold gaming events for customers, owners said.

In other matters, the city will be seeking a new member to replace Lynne Holden, whose term expires at the end of the month. Since the commission only meets once a month, Monday's meeting was Holden's last.

Holden said she chose not to accept another term on the commission  but resigned instead.
"I was very torn," she said. "But it just was time."

Holden served six years on Easton's Historic District Commission, which oversees and seeks to preserve the historic achitecture and atmosphere of the city's Downtown preservation district.

It is unclear if there are any applicants to fill the now-vacant spot, which are appointed and approved by city council.

Holden said she did suggest a possible replacement, though she declined to identify the person explaining that she's uncertain whether the person will apply for the position or not.

She added that her recommendation is by no means a guarantee of approval and said that she hopes more than one person applies for the vacancy.

The city has not yet advertised to fill the position, but it's expected that city council will discuss the vacancy shortly.

Those interested in applying to serve on the Historic District Commission should contact the city clerk's office at 610-250-6731  for more information.

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