Preservation commission tables requests for tables on bluff, new business lighting

Published 11:55 am Thursday, February 9, 2023

NATCHEZ — The Natchez Preservation Commission tabled a number of applications from residents and business owners on Wednesday because those applications did not provide enough information to allow the commission to make an informed decision.

Jim Smith of 689 Sales LLC sought permission to install four exterior lights at 100 Main St. near Hallelujah Wine and Spirits.

Commissioners Andy Sartin and Liz Dantone questioned whether the lights presented in Smith’s plan could be mounted in such a way as to not damage the cornices or columns, which are original to the building.

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They tabled Smith’s request and asked him to come back next month with more information about the lights and how they would be mounted to the building.

The commission also tabled a request by the Community Alliance to install six new picnic tables and trash cans on the bluff, replacing four picnic tables and two trash cans that are currently in the general vicinity.

Commissioners had a multitude of questions, but no one from the Community Alliance was in attendance at the meeting to field questions.

Commissioner Smokey Joe Frank was concerned about the proposed location for those tables, as was Commissioner Charles Hill. Hill said he thought it would be better to locate the tables where they would take advantage of the shade of nearby trees, rather than “line them up like military barracks.” Frank said the proposed location of the tables sit atop an area where historic French structures once stood.

City Planner Frankie Legaux said Public Works Director Justin Dollar had expressed concern about the group’s plans to anchor the tables on concrete pads.

“If they are anchored in concrete they would be difficult to move for events, like the balloon festival,” Legaux said. She said theft of the tables or trashcans has not been an issue in the past, and that Dollar has other ways of securing the tables that would allow them to be moved when necessary for events on the bluff.

Dantone said she was concerned about the design of the tables. Those proposed do not match others located further north on the bluff.

“Any new picnic tables should match (existing ones) and provide the same sense of order,” Dantone said.

The commission also tabled a request Carolyn Cosgriff to replace windows and relocate a door at 607 Oak St., which is in the city’s historic district. Commissioners need more information to make a decision.

The commission approved three requests:

• Randall and Helen Moss Smith at 222 S. Wall St., to replace wood gates with a different style wood gates.

• Heather Cunningham to install a screen door on the front door of the home at 32 Cemetery Road.

• Barbara Hanley at 313 S. Pearl St. in the historic district to replace doors and windows.