Attorney: Plaintiffs not pursuing demolition case

PARKERSBURG — The attorney who filed a lawsuit over the Parkersburg Board of Zoning Appeals’ approval of the demolition of two historic structures said the matter is not being pursued further.

In June, Mark Sadd filed a petition for a writ of certiorari on behalf of Parkersburg residents Justin Roedersheimer and the late Todd Stubbe after the BZA upheld votes by the Central Downtown Business District Design and Facade Committee approving plans to demolish the former Citizens National Bank and Mather buildings at the corner of Fourth and Market streets. The petition asked that the board’s decision be vacated or reversed, claiming there was no objective evidence presented to support the demolitions, nor any guidelines on which such a decision could be based.

In a response, Assistant City Attorney Rob Tebay said historic preservation was just one of four criteria to be applied and asked that the petition be dismissed.

The filing related specifically to the Mather Building, longtime home of the Bankshot Pub and former site of Franklin and DeHaven Jewelers, but did not seek a stay of the demolition of either building.

The buildings were razed in late June. On July 24, Wood County Circuit Court Judge J.D. Beane dismissed the writ petition, saying the issues raised in the proceeding were rendered moot by the demolitions.

Beane did reaffirm that Roedersheimer and Stubbe were considered affected parties by the demolitions, something he ruled when granting a stay of the demolitions in February. The city’s response to the writ petition once again questioned that status.

In his ruling, Beane said a claim of injury by the decision could be pursued in a separate civil action.

Sadd said in a recent email that “Out of respect for (Stubbe), we currently are not pursuing any remedy.”

Neighboring WesBanco had deals in place to acquire both properties, provided the structures could be demolished.

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