Mayfair residents hung up on pawn shop sign

A Mayfair pawn shop was on the receiving end of king-size criticism as members of the Mayfair Civic Association considered three zoning appeals during a June 20 community meeting.

The business, known as Mayfair Pawn Shop at 7249 Frankford Ave., is seeking the legalization of an existing awning sign featuring the name of the shop, along with renderings of a guitar, power drill, laptop computer and a stack of cash, as well as two depictions of the three-sphere pawnbrokers’ symbol. The city’s Department of Licenses and Inspection has rejected the permit application because the sign is too big, according to the shop’s zoning attorney, Shawn Ward. The existing sign covers 74 square feet, 20 more than permitted by the zoning code, Ward said.

Meanwhile, the SCA’s zoning chairman, Joe DeFelice, insisted that the store adopted its cursive “Mayfair” logo, including the shamrock that dots the “i,” without permission from the civic association, which first used a similar logo several years ago on some T-shirts.

DeFelice and other SCA members further criticized the business for cluttering the shop’s front windows with unsightly temporary signs promoting its “cash for gold,” jewelry trade and other activities. DeFelice claimed that the proprietor has been unresponsive to community leaders’ past efforts to improve the appearance of the business.

Ward acknowledged that the business did not obtain city permits before hiring a contractor to install the awning sign several years ago. And the attorney has advised the business to refrain from cluttering the windows with additional signage.

Although the SCA voted to oppose the zoning appeal, DeFelice agreed to continue a dialogue with Ward in an effort to reach a compromise on the signs and other issues. A Zoning Board hearing is scheduled for Aug. 2.

SCA members voted unanimously to approve two unrelated zoning appeals. In one case, the owner of James A. McCafferty Funeral Home at 6709–11 Frankford Ave. is seeking to consolidate its two parcels into one for taxation and zoning purposes.

The funeral home and a two-story garage behind it will not be changed, but they are technically considered two properties.

Neighbors also approved an application by the owners of 7-Eleven at Tyson and Rowland avenues to build a 20-foot by 36-foot canopy over the gas pumps there. The business recently removed an old 24-by-24 canopy, only to learn that it needed a variance to build the replacement. ••