The long term and vociferous dispute between Chang Mart on Eutaw Place and area residents has apparently come to an end. The resolution was reached during a two hour closed-door deliberation at the Baltimore Liquor Board yesterday with the attorneys for the three concerned parties. Liquor Board Commissioner Nathan Irby mediated the proceedings.
The community had long complained about the traffic and activities around and within Chang Mart, as well as the poor physical condition of the store. In previous hearings, hundreds of people testified, jamming the liquor board hearings with hours of testimony. About sixty people had arrived yesterday, about forty of whom had been bussed in by Chang to testify on his behalf.
Liquor Board Chairman Leonard Skolnick held the case in abeyance until April 29th, when the parties must produce a signed letter of intent.
In exchange for the community to drop its Protest of Renewal of
Chang’s liquor license, Chang agreed to no longer sell fortified wines and “shorties,” and the owners of Marlbourough Apartments, where Chang’s store is located, agreed to fund major renovations of the store. Several other agreements were not disclosed at the hearing.
The community was represented by Richard Rosenthal; Chang Mart was represented by Gary Maslin, and Marlborough Apartments were represented by William Hazelhurst.
Two other Protest of Renewals were on the afternoon Docket of the Liquor Board. Both had been brought forward by Irvington community organizations. Both establishments, Frederick Station Saloon and Kozy Klub, had their licenses renewed.
Dorothy Dobbyn of the Neighborhood Services Center, community organizer Blain Victorson, and Velma Bisiriyu of the Irvington Merchants Association all spoke against the renewals, citing the saturation of bars and package stores in the area, as well as the crime element in the neighborhood.