Plans to save a historically significant house by moving it to a spot near Antelope Park took another step forward Wednesday.

The Lincoln-Lancaster County Planning Commission unanimously voted for a zoning change and special permit to designate a lot at 29th and Washington streets as a historic landmark. The decision would allow developers -- who want to build a CVS pharmacy at 16th and South streets -- to move a century-old house there.

The Elias Dial house at 2033 S. 16th St. was built in 1904 and was designated a landmark in 1988 for its architectural significance.

B&J Partnership, the real estate arm of Speedway Motors, owns the home and wants to dispose of it to make way for the CVS.

B&J was denied a permit to demolish the house. But that denial lasts six months, after which the house can be torn down.

Last week, the city's Historic Preservation Commission approved designating the 29th and Washington lot a historic landmark to facilitate the move.

Ed Zimmer, the city's historic preservation planner, acknowledged that was an unusual move but, "we're attempting to create an opportunity to save this building."

Peter Katt, an attorney speaking on behalf of B&J Partnership, said his client would rather move the house than tear it down.

"We believe that the best outcome for this property is to be saved rather than demolished," Katt said.

There are still many details to be worked out, so Zimmer said the city's Planning Department will ask the City Council to put the plan on its pending list and not consider it for final approval until a deal to move the house is in place.

Also Wednesday, the planning commission:

  • Voted in favor of amending the city-county Comprehensive Plan to add a $4.8 million Lincoln Electric System data center to the Capital Improvements Program. LES plans to build the center on the grounds of its Rokeby Generating Station at 8000 S.W. 12th St.
  • Approved annexation and a zoning change on 15.5 acres of land near 62nd Street and Yankee Hill Road for a proposed 52-home subdivision called Village Meadows.

Reach Matt Olberding at 473-2647 or molberding@journalstar.com.

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