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Franklinsteins Appeal Moves Forward

Future of Franklin Street bar hangs in the balance of court decision

A small step in Evansville, but one towards a final decision for Franklinsteins on Franklin Street, the proposed bar by the owner of KC’s Timeout Lounge.

It’s a battle over parking spaces on the west side that has turned into a months-long ordeal with months left to go.

This latest chapter comes with a special called meeting by the Board of Zoning Appeals.

The BZA put a halt to Franklinstein’s plans in November with a 4-3 vote against, but it advanced its appeal in Vanderburgh Circuit Court Thursday by approving findings of fact; essentially a court document on how the board made its decision.

It centers around the old Bud's Harley Davidson building on Franklin St. Kerry Chesser bought it with plans to build his Franklinsteins bar.

The BZA voted against a parking variance where Chesser was asking for less parking spaces than required by city code.

Chesser has appealed that decision and the case will be decided by Circuit Court Judge David Kiely.

Kiely has three options: he could affirm the BZA decision and that's the end, or he could put it back on the board.

“He can remand the case back for finding that the variances should have been granted,” says BZA attorney, Dirck Stahl, “he can also remand it back for further hearings if he believes there are factual issues.”

If Judge Kiely upholds the BZA decision, Chesser could still reapply for a variance and go through the process again.

It will likely be months before a decision comes from the court.

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