Clock repair expert takes occupancy, commends Rockwell
Rockland — On Time Clock Repair owner Charlie Swift has taken occupancy at 110 Union St., with an "Open" for business flag placed on the railing May 29. Swift, whose business was formerly located on Main Street, commends Rockland Realty LLC owner Richard Rockwell for his new digs.
The second floor of the building contains an apartment featuring a spiral staircase.
Last week, Rockland Planning Board authorized the city code enforcement officer to issue a Temporary Certificate of Occupancy for Rockwell's property. It is in place until 60 days after the city completes a Public Works repair project along Lindsey Brook near Rockwell's property line.
The Public Works project involves opening an area of the brook to repair sinkholes, which will involve agreements to gain easements as well as state Department of Environmental Protection approval, Public Works Director Greg Blackwell said. Such a project will take at least a few months, he added.
Once repairs are completed, Rockwell will be required to complete landscaping and fencing to his property as he moves toward permanent occupancy. A paved parking area is already provided, and a ramp in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act will be added.
At one time, the property was dilapidated and in serious need of repair, Swift and Rockwell both acknowledged. Swift, who also buys gold, silver, and coins, said Rockwell is the kind of property owner who believes in restoring Rockland's buildings — the right way.
"He [Rockwell] bought the property just to show what can be done with it," Swift said May 29 inside his well-lit business that showcases a number of antique clocks. "He didn't cut any corners, believe me."
"I took on this project because I thought that the building, as it was, was the worst possible reflection on Rockland," Rockwell said. He added that the property, at the corner of Union and Summer streets, is one of 26 parcels in the city's Transition Zone that is a blend of residential and commercial structures.
The Planning Board approved the property's change of use in June 2013 from a single family dwelling to a mixed use building with retail and residential uses. Rockwell said part of the building was in a condemned state, requiring his contractor, Tom Potter, to work his magic on the structure.
Courier Publications reporter Larry Di Giovanni can be reached at 594-4401 x. 117, or by email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
207 594-4401 ext. 117
Larry Di Giovanni, a veteran journalist with more than 20 years of experience, is returning to his daily reporting roots in order to cover the city of Rockland for The Courier-Gazette. Originally from Athens, Ohio, his family includes one son, Tony.
Di Giovanni has covered news beats ranging from the city of South Lake Tahoe, Calif., to the largest tribal government in the United States — the Navajo Nation. He has also worked as a writer in the public education and higher education fields. He's an animal enthusiast and loves dogs.
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