Bowling alley may get new owner

Published 11:53 am Friday, November 23, 2012

The Langston-Gray Bowling Center in Bainbridge

The bowling alley located next to the Bainbridge YMCA may be getting a new owner soon, according to information revealed during recent City of Bainbridge meetings.

At its Nov. 20 meeting, the Bainbridge City Council unanimously approved a request from the Bainbridge-Decatur County YMCA to rezone the parcel of land that the Langston-Gray Bowling Alley sits on at 1812 Shotwell Street from Institutional to Highway Commercial.

The rezoning request, which had been heard previously before the Bainbridge Planning Commission, will allow the bowling alley property to have expanded usage if it is operated independently from the YMCA.

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In a memo to the Planning Commission, Bainbridge Planning and Zoning Official Major Brannen listed examples of permitted property uses in highway commercial and institutional zones.

The institutional zoning only allows for uses such as clubs, lodges, churches, hospitals and non-profit businesses. The highway commercial zone allows for commercial recreational facilities, arcades, country clubs, restaurant and retail trade establishments.

Since the bowling center has a shop and concession kitchen, the highway commercial zone better matches the existing use of the bowling alley and surrounding commercial properties on Shotwell Street, Brannen wrote.

Local banker and YMCA board member Charlie Bowles spoke at the Planning Commission’s Nov. 13 meeting and said he understood that Nancy Gray of Bainbridge intends to purchase the bowling alley from the YMCA in the near future.

Gray, who is an avid bowler herself, is the widow of the late Sammy Gray Sr., for whom the bowling alley is partially named. The other person the bowling center is named for is the late Max Langston, a prominent local businessman who was Mrs. Gray’s father.


Downtown street closure requests

The council heard from Kristy Elkins, the owner of Polka Dots and Gifts Store at 103 Water Street, who initially wanted to request closure of part of Water Street in front of her store on Saturday, Dec. 15, between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., to accomodate a Webkinz Van Tour event. The event would promote sales of the Webkinz children’s toys with free games and prizes. However, due to some council members’ concern that they have not traditionally granted street closure requests to for-profit businesses, Elkins agreed to work with City Manager Chris Hobby on possibly hosting the event in Willis Park.

The council approved a request from Bainbridge Main Street to close a portion of Water Street, between its intersections with Broad and West Streets, on Dec. 20, from 4 p.m. until 9 p.m., to accommodate hay rides during the Christmas on the Square event.


Other business

• Approved, by unanimous vote, the purchase of $100 in Bainbridge Bucks (usable at participating local businesses) for each of the 150 current city employees, at a total cost of $15,000. The Bainbridge Bucks are intended as a holiday bonus for all city employees.

• The Council unanimously approved two resolutions related to its workers’ compensation insurance coverage. The council accepted a low bid of $158,530 from the Georgia Municipal Association of Atlanta, Ga., for its workers’ compensation premium. Since the GMA’s workers’ compensation pool was enabled by an act of the Georgia Legislature, the council had to formally sign on to joining the pool. In a separate resolution, the council voted to pay $58 to allow the city government to provide workers’ compensation coverage for council members.

• Approved, by unanimous vote, an alcoholic beverage license application for Carolina Sanches, doing business as Taqueria Los Sanches at 712 S. Scott St., for sales of malt beverages for on-premises consumption.

• Re-appointed Jason Lee of Bates Engineering to serve as one of the city’s representatives on the Development Authority of Bainbridge and Decatur County.

• Approved, by unanimous vote, final amendments to the city’s budget for its 2011-2012 fiscal year.


Bids and Bills

Bills: $3,285 from Hall Monument LLC of Donalsonville, Ga., for replacement of the memorial monument honoring the Bainbridge victims of the Winecoff Hotel Fire in Atlanta, Ga., on Dec. 7, 1946. The monument is located in Willis Park.

Bids: $12,747.51 from E & E of Albany, Ga., for mechanical joint supplies for the Gordon Avenue storm water station; $3,600 from Pennington Seed of Madison, Fla., for 80 fifty-pound bags of perennial rye grass; $4,214 from Quality Signs of Bainbridge for historical plaques featuring the ships of Admiral William Bainbridge and Commodore Stephen Decatur Jr., to be installed at the Bill Reynolds Sports Park; $23,298 from Data Flow Systems Inc. of Melbourne, Fla., for an upgrade of the telemetry used for monitoring sewage lift stations; and $10,800 from Site Scapes of Lincoln, Neb., for new benches and trash receptacles to be placed in Willis Park.