Good News for Residents Who Wanted to See the South Shore Variety Store Remain Open
The Variety Store has been offered a long term lease and plans have been made to turn the remaining empty portion of the existing structure into 2 apartments on the main floor. The existing basement apartment will also be made legal for occupancy. Paul and Leo, owners of the building, held an informal meeting with residents in immediate proximity to the store, Councilor Phil Bannon and the MLRA to assure everyone the store has been given a long term lease and to review the proposed changes to the building.
Residents at the meeting were pleased with the new plan, but did express general concern about the overall maintenance and upkeep of the site. Garbage strewn around the property, graffiti and vandalism, and concerns about a proposed garbage dumpster were identified as problems with the property and residents wanted a guarantee that more attention would be paid to ensure it was properly maintained. Building owners listened to the groups’ concerns and committed to ensuring the property maintenance would be improved. Paul and Leo also sited that once the new main floor apartments were occupied, it would likely help to reduce the ongoing problems of vandalism and loitering.
The owners are to meet once more with the local residents to go over final plans before proceeding to Council for approval. It was refreshing to see a frank exchange of views between residents and the owners and to see positive progress being made.