ABINGDON, Va. — Abingdon Town Council passed a special-use permit for Dave Dalton on Monday to move the Hiram Dooley House to Park Street.
The 1849 structure on Pecan Street had been slated for destruction by the leaders of Sinking Spring Presbyterian Church, saying it was costly to maintain and that the space was needed to construct a picnic shelter.
Dalton, a part-time resident of Abingdon and son-in-law of former mayor Lois Humphreys, has expressed interest in saving the brick home and restoring it as a long-term rental property on Park Street.
The planned move of the house in May requires a special-use permit because the proposed relocation site sits in a fringe flood zone, said the town’s zoning administrator, Jason Boswell.
Boswell called moving the house “quite an undertaking.”
In a special called meeting on Monday, the town’s planning commission voted unanimously to approve a special-use permit.
That permit was then forwarded to the Town Council, whose members thanked Dalton for taking the effort to save the house.
“I personally would like to thank you,” said Mayor Derek Webb.
Jeff Johnson, a member of the church, spoke at both meetings on Monday to express support for Dalton to move the house.
According to Johnson, the church had “always been willing to lend an ear” to anyone who had an interest in moving the structure.
Dalton, 62, who lives in Charlotte, North Carolina, called the church “incredible” for its cooperation and also praised town officials.
“My main focus is just to get the house moved,” Dalton said.
At this point, however, Dalton is still trying to determine the exact costs — now estimated at $50,000 — to lower the utility lines on poles so that the house can be moved.
“There are many people who want to be part of the solution — not the problem,” Dalton said.
“We plan on creating a GoFundMe page on Wednesday to see if the community will cover the costs to drop the utility lines along Park Street as we move the house 200 feet. This is the largest hurdle to still overcome.”
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