Recorder News Staff

The city planning commission approved a site plan and special use permit Wednesday night for a ceramic studio to be placed on 20 Hibbard Street.

Scott M. Keller presented the application for Timeless Memories Ceramic Studio. He said the facility would sell artwork and people could come in and do art on ceramic pieces.

According to the business plan, Timeless Memories Ceramic Studio is father- and daughter-owned and operated. Customers could go to the facility to pick a piece and paint it. There also will be special instruction on how to paint a ceramic piece, per customer request. There will be a session fee for each visit, which includes the use of paint, stains and glazes, according to the plan.

Planning Commission Chairman Paul Gavry asked if there would be classes, or if people could just come in and use their facility to work on their art piece.

Keller said a customer would purchase a ceramic piece to paint and work on.

Gavry also asked the difference between the studio space versus the kiln space and storage, as well as how many people would use the facility at once.

“Is there a separate room where people would work on their artwork?” Gavry said.

Keller explained the way the building is set up.

“You would walk into the front door and we are doing a display room, then you would walk into another room which we consider studio room one,” he said. “Then, off of that is another room in the front which, if we needed to use that space we would and there’s an office there. From that point, in the studio room, there’s a door into our storage, which would be closed. The storage room would be separate and store the molds. The kiln is in the back room away from everybody.”

Keller said the facility would be set up to have 12 people at a maximum.

Planning Commission member Judith Hefferan Elmy asked if there is special fire protection for having a kiln in a building.

Keller said a kiln is coded the same as a fireplace and it will be installed by a professional licensed electrician.

Planning commission members also questioned the hours of operation and parking.

Keller said there is a driveway that goes off of Jay Street, which could fit five to eight cars. On Hibbard, there is another driveway that could fit five cars. Keller estimated 10 to 12 spots and said the driveways are paved, but he has yet to mark them.

The project business plan states the facility would be open seven days per week. Keller said they are unsure how many customers they will get. Hours will not be set in stone and based on when people would like to use the facility.

Planning commission member Danielle Whelly asked if there would be any changes made to the outside of the building or if it would remain the same.

Keller said he would like to install a handicap ramp on the outside of the building and put up a vinyl sign above the door, approximately 2 by 3 feet.  He said he would also like to put the handicap parking in the front of the building right on Hibbard Street.

The building is two-story and Keller said there is no one living upstairs and believes it is just open space. Keller said he is renting the studio space and the building was previously vacant.