Owls Head Planning Board grants permit for Frankie's Garage replacementLighthouse Museum application postponed until April
Owls Head — Customers of Frankie’s Garage at 58 Weskeag Road, Route 73, will be pleased to learn the building is being replaced less than two months after the Feb. 10 fire that razed it.
Immediately after the fire, several readers of this newspaper’s account wrote in saying they hoped that garage owner Cecil Fogg would rebuild.
The Owls Head Planning Board on March 13 issued a building permit to Fogg to rebuild Frankie's Garage on the same footprint.
The garage replacement will be 50 feet by 60 feet, with an office area and two bays, and a fenced-in area where a third bay used to be.
Fogg said after the meeting that he has to drill a well and put down a slab before he can begin construction.
The fire occurred on a Sunday afternoon, Feb. 10. Fire departments from Owls Head, South Thomaston, Rockland and St. George arrived at the scene shortly, but the fire destroyed the garage while a number of neighbors watched.
No one was injured, according to Owls Head Fire Chief Frank Ross. The fire department got the call at 3:39 p.m., he said. About 48 firefighters responded.
Firefighters struggled throughout the effort due to a lack of a nearby water source.
The late Frank Salo founded the garage in the 1950s.
The Maine State Fire Marshal's Office has determined the fire started in a waste oil burner. Neighbors from across the street had seen the fire in the burner and taken pictures through a window in the front door.
Frankie's Garage has worked on large trucks and inspected Rockland school buses for several years. Family members said some of the fire trucks at the scene of the fire were inspected there, according to a Courier-Gazette account.
In other business before the planning board, Jim Taylor receive permission to replace two walls of a foundation in a Shoreland Zone 75-foot buffer at 9 Castlewood Lane.
The American Lighthouse Foundation was told it had to wait until next month's planning board meeting to be put on the agenda for a change of use permit. The Foundation is planning to convert the lighthouse keeper's house into a museum and gift shop and has already signed a lease agreement with the U.S. Coast Guard, owner of the property.
The planning board on Wednesday night said its bylaws do not permit members to vote on items that are not on their agenda.
Voters at a special town meeting had approved a change of zoning but not a change of use on the property.
The planning board said the septic system will have to be redesigned for a building serving the public rather than for a light house keeper's family.
Richard Carver, chairman of the board of selectmen, asked the planning board why the lighthouse foundation was not on the agenda.
"What they asked us to do we could not do," said Richard Benner, planning board chairman.
The Foundation will have to wait until the second Wednesday in April to submit its change of use application and get it on the agenda 10 days before the meeting.
The Foundation currently maintains an office in downtown Rockland.
Courier Publications reporter George Chappell can be reached at 207-594-4401, ext. 117, or at email@example.com.