FAIRLAWN: The owner of Ivan’s Deli is trying to put a new tractor trailer on his property. But first he must bypass the uncertainties of the Fairlawn Planning Commission.
Ivan Lefkowitz, the owner of Ivan’s Deli on West Market Street, came before the planning commission at its meeting Thursday evening. He laid out his plan to remove two smaller tractor trailers he had been using for the past 16 years. Lefwitz said the old trailers were worn out and starting to leak. He also decided to remove some of the brush and debris behind his building.
His plan was to make the property look cleaner. The planning commission, however, said that his new tractor trailer is not very pleasing to the eye.
“I think that sets a very poor precedent by using trailers for storage in our city,” said board member Jim Swartz. Swartz said he has taken a walk along the property and said it is too easy to notice. He said it does not live up to the high standards of the city.
Despite the zoning commission’s concerns with the tractor trailer, the majority of city officials are supporting Lefkowitz. Zoning Commissioner Christopher Randles said he had already spoken with Lefkowitz, and brought the issue before the mayor. He said the mayor was on board.
“I thought it sounded like a good plan,” Randles said.
Lefkowitz thought it was a good plan too, but now he is wondering if he should have left well enough alone.
“I could have left those there until I was 100 years old,” Lefkowitz said. During the commission meeting, Lefkowitz kept trying to tell the board that he thought he was doing the right thing by cleaning the back lot. He thought removing trash and cutting down excessive trees and plants would make the property more appealing.
“You can’t even see the trailer from the street,” Lefkowitz said. “I mean, you really have to look for it.”
City councilwoman Susan Sullivan was the only council member to oppose the tractor trailer. She said a trailer diminishes the property value of the business. However, she did not fail to praise Lefkowitz for his work.
“His food is excellent and I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like it,” Sullivan said. “So I’m encouraging him to find a storage area for his equipment.”
The board gave Lefkowitz a few suggestions on where he could store his equipment. But in the end, instead of having the board vote on the issue, Lefkowitz decided to the idea and try to come up with a better solution.
“I don’t think it’s a real problem per say,” Lefkowitz said. “But what are you going to do.”