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McKeesport's zoning hearing board has denied a request for a conditional use permit at the former David Israel men's clothing store at 507 Fifth Ave.
The permit was requested by the building's owner, the McKeesport Preservation Society, which had sought permission to use the structure for “educational” purposes, said A.J. Tedesco, McKeesport community development director.
The building is in a commercial C-2 zoning district, which according to the city's zoning code is intended for "retail and service commercial uses along with business, professional and medical offices, and other related business uses."
Certain types of schools are permitted in C-2 zoning. But at a hearing Sept. 23, the zoning board expressed its opinion that the educational use was too vaguely described, Tedesco said.
Zoning board decisions may be appealed to the Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas.
The roughly 5,000 square foot buiilding housed David Israel from 1956 to 1991, when the owners retired and the store closed, according to property records and news clippings. The building was purchased by Dan and Deborah Wysni of White Oak in 1992 and housed their business, DW Environmental Systems.
Real estate records indicate that the Wysnis sold the building to the preservation society for a nominal $1 in July 2018. It has been vacant for several years.
Jason Togyer is the editor of The Tube City Almanac and volunteer executive director of Tube City Community Media Inc. He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Originally published October 03, 2019.