Public hearing set for Annapolis Royal Farms proposal

Royal Farms will go before the Annapolis Board of Appeals on Tuesday for a review of its plan to open a store at City Dock.

Royal Farms wants to open in the former home of Stevens Hardware at 142 Dock St. in downtown Annapolis.

The Baltimore-based company is seeking approval of a special zoning exception that would allow for a delicatessen in the building. Royal Farms has argued that its concept for the Annapolis store would be a deli, as opposed to a convenience store.

Convenience stores are not allowed under the zoning restrictions in the historic district.

The Board of Appeals will meet at 7 p.m. Tuesday at City Hall, 160 Duke of Gloucester St. A public hearing on the Royal Farms proposal will be held as part of the meeting.

This will be Royal Farms' second appearance before the Board of Appeals. In March, board members did not make a decision on the merits of the proposal, as Royal Farms agreed to provide city planners with more information on sales at similar stores. At that meeting, city planning officials opposed the special exception request.

The Stevens family still owns the circa 1880 building, where it operated a hardware store for more than 50 years that closed in December 2012. The building is assessed for tax purposes at $1.42 million.

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