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New gas station, restaurant planned for Dunbar

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Several projects are beginning to take shape in Dunbar, including a gas station, a new restaurant and moving the city's police officers to a new home.

Kroger representatives told Dunbar city officials they will move forward with plans to build a fuel station at the grocery store at Fletcher Square, officials said during a council meeting Monday.

Bill Cunningham, Dunbar's building inspector, said he was told they would be applying for permits next month.

The fuel station will be constructed in a vacant space behind TLC Lube and Wash Car Care Center off Dunbar Avenue.

Cunningham said the fuel station doesn't come as a surprise because the plans for the site have been discussed for about a year. He said the store plans to have the fuel center complete by spring.

While that project is in its beginning stages, another project in the city is well on its way to completion.

Contractors have been working to lay the foundation for a patio at the new Los Agaves restaurant, which is set to open in the old Shoney's location, Cunningham said. Shoney's, located at the intersection of Tenth Street and Dunbar Avenue, closed suddenly last month with no intentions to reopen.

The owners of Los Agaves have leased the space with plans to expand their franchise. The restaurant's other location is in South Charleston, also in a former Shoney's restaurant.

Cunningham said contractors were installing a 25-foot by 25-foot patio on the Dunbar Avenue side of the building. Contractors have been working daily to remodel the inside.

"Things are moving along over there," Cunningham said.

The work is expected to be complete by January.

In other business, council members voted to authorize Mayor Jack Yeager to accept a building from Vasudeo and Arundhati Kshirsagar, medical doctors who are retiring from their practice.

Cunningham said Arundhati Kshirsagar worked for many years as an obstetrician and gynecologist while her husband, Vasudeo, worked as a medical examiner. The couple offered to donate their building on Leone Lane to the city.

The building, which has 2,695 square-feet of space, has entrances on Leone Lane and Ohio Avenue. Yeager said the building will house the city's police officers once renovations are complete.

Police officers currently are headquartered in the basement of City Hall. 

Lt. Bill Moss, who was standing in for Chief Earl Whittington at the meeting, said the space would create a safer environment for civilian employees. In the current location, civilians sometimes are sitting in a room right next to where criminals are being processed.

Cunningham said one entrance will be for administrative purposes while another entrance will be used for booking criminals.

Council members also voted to approve Brian Lanham as the city's new municipal court judge. Lanham, a Charleston native, currently works as a traffic safety resource prosecutor at the West Virginia Prosecuting Attorneys Institute. He also is a former Braxton County Prosecutor.

Several events have been planned for the holiday season.

Recreation Director Bub Jones said participants for this year's Commode Bowl parade should line up in the McDonald's parking lot at 11 a.m. Saturday. The parade will begin at noon and the Commode Bowl football game will begin at 1 p.m. at Lions field.

The city's Christmas tree lighting ceremony will be held at 5 p.m. Nov. 28 at City Hall. The city's annual nighttime Christmas parade will be Dec. 2.


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