BY SARAH GREGORY
The Greeneville Board of Zoning Appeals voted Tuesday to grant approval to an off-street parking lot at 102 Rankin Drive.
The request was made by Heritage Community Bank, which owns the piece of commercial property that is located in a residential neighborhood.
That location is a former First Tennessee Bank branch with an accompanying adjacent lot.
Craig Ogle, a representative from Heritage Community Bank, said the property has been for sale for the past couple of years.
There are current negotiations, Ogle said, with a telecommunications company to purchase the building and the adjacent lot.
A part of that deal, he said, would be creating an additional 10 parking spaces in the adjacent lot prior to the sale.
Building Inspector Jeff Woods told the board that the property meets all requirements as outlined in the Town's ordinances.
There are no restrictions that would prevent the lot from being used for parking, and existing trees would remain on the property to act as a buffer, Ogle said.
A citizen, Thurman Brotherton, who said he lives next door to the lot in question, addressed the board to object to the measure.
Brotherton did not specify why he objected to the lot's use as an off-street parking lot, but repeatedly told the board he believed residents in the nearby neighborhoods should have been spoken to about the change.
Brotherton said that such measures have been denied in the past.
It was explained, however, that past requests have differed in that they were not for off-street parking lots, but for changes to the building that would have required the board to grant variances to ordinances.
The current use, it was explained by board member Keith Paxton, who is also an alderman for the Town of Greeneville, does not require any variances from the Town's established ordinances.
After a few minutes of discussion, the measure was approved unanimously. Board member Bob Biddle abstained from voting since he is a stockholder for Heritage Community Bank.