CHRISTIANSBURG — The town council approved a code change this past week that provides a path for the opening of billiards or pool halls where alcoholic beverages are also sold.
The council, on a 5-0 vote, approved an amendment that allows billiards in a room where alcoholic beverages are being sold only if the elected body grants a conditional use permit.
Councilwoman Tanya Hockett abstained from the vote and explained her reasons.
“Where my husband is general manager of Bull & Bones, at one point they could take advantage of this change,” she said. “I feel like I need to abstain from this vote.”
Bull & Bones is a restaurant and brewery in Blacksburg that also features pool tables as part of the entertainment.
The recent code change was prompted by business owner Ron Frank Jr., who is looking to open a restaurant in Christiansburg that will include pool tables and serve alcoholic beverages. Frank currently owns 1st Pawn and Main Street Grill in Pulaski.
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Up until the amendment, Christiansburg didn’t allow billiards or pool in the same room where beer or wine was being dispensed or sold. The town, however, did allow pool rooms without beer or wine sales in a number of its zoning districts.
Town staff expanded the language in the recent amendment to include all alcoholic beverages — and not just beer or wine — because beer, wine and other alcoholic beverages are common offerings of restaurants today, according to a document on the code change.
“The amendment would allow this use where deemed appropriate within the town while maintaining regulatory authority through the conditional use permit process for the protection of surrounding properties,” according to a town document.
As far as Frank’s project is concerned, a Sept. 27 town council public hearing is scheduled for the conditional use permit needed for his restaurant and pool room establishment, Assistant Town Manager Andrew Warren said.
The permit is for a property at 3165 N. Franklin St., Warren told council. The property was designated as commercial on the future land use map, he said.
The property, which neighbors a number of other businesses, is located almost directly across the road from the Corning plant on the northern end of town.
The town planning commission will take up the permit matter well before the public hearing in late September, Warren said.