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July 04. 2014 7:23PM

Salem funeral home gets approval to expand parking

SALEM — The owner of the Douglas-Johnson Funeral Home on Main Street has received approval to fix and expand its parking from the Zoning Board of Adjustment.

The funeral home sought a variance from the ZBA for a larger lot coverage than allowed in the business-office district.

The funeral home was allowed in the district by a variance in 1990, according to project engineer Joseph Maynard.

Under zoning ordinances, 50 percent of a lot can be covered by impervious materials such as the building itself, parking and walkways. With the latest variance, the funeral home will be allowed to cover 60 percent of the 1.1-acre lot.

The business wants to resurface the parking lot and bring it in conformance with town regulations by widening the size of the spaces and the aisle widths.

The increase would bring the parking lot up to 55 spaces.

The improvements to the lot will include better marking of two handicap accessible spaces near the front of the funeral home.

ZBA member Bernie Campbell said he did not feel the increase in lot coverage would be out of character for the neighborhood.

“The circulation and the safety will be improved,” said ZBA Chairman Gary Azarian.

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