Commission gives church go-ahead on changes

Published 12:00 am Friday, June 8, 2001

Jefferson Street United Methodist Church cleared another hurdle to its addition plans with Thursday’s approval from the Natchez Zoning Board of Adjustments.

The church was given a variance to encroach about 10 feet into the front setback of its property to construct a porte cochere, or covered drive-through, on the front of the church’s planned addition.

Plans for the addition include space for classrooms, a gym and meeting space. The addition would connect with the existing church building by a narrow passage at the rear and extend to cover much of what is now an empty lot.

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The addition has already been approved by the Natchez Historic Preservation Commission.

Paul O’Malley, who owns property adjacent to the church, told the board that he is concerned that the addition will be too close to his property.

&uot;A wall (of my) building may need to be dismantled, and I&160;just want to make sure (crews) could get in there to do that,&uot; O’Malley said.

The addition would sit just four feet from O’Malley’s building. But Assistant City Planner Gretchen Kuechler noted that both parcels are located in a B-2 (general business) zoning district and, as such, can be built without a buffer zone between them.

In other business, the board:

4Approved a variance allowing Barbara Hinson to continue to operate an existing day care at 325 Highland Blvd.

4Approved a variance allowing Natchez Regional Medical Center to add about six feet of signage advertising its new Open Air MRI of the Miss-Lou facility.

4Approved a variance allowing Dunleith Plantation to replace existing signs with 12 square feet of signage advertising its Castle restaurant and pub in addition to its bed-and-breakfast facilities.