The town of Washington Grove passed a measure Monday that gives a 7-Eleven store and a restaurant until July 1985 to move from town.
In an effort to control the litter and loitering resulting from high-volume businesses, the Town Council unanimously passed a zoning amendment that will no longer allow the 7-Eleven convenience store and a restaurant called The Works to stay in the commercial corner near Gaithersburg.
At a public hearing in July, residents particularly complained about noise and litter by 7-Eleven customers.
The amendment limits the permitted uses of the commercial zone to government offices, such as a post office; beauty and barber shops; retail meat markets, and professional offices. Other low-volume uses may be permitted with a special exception granted by the Board of Zoning Appeals, Mayor Barbara Hawk said.
"This is not 'running them out of town,' " Hawk said, adding that the two-year phase-out period gives the stores time to recoup their investment at that location.
William Kominers, an attorney representing Southland Corp., which owns the 7-Eleven, said, "We do not believe there is an adequate amortization period," referring to the two years before the amendment takes effect. Kominers did not say what action, if any, Southland will take, but did not rule out taking the town to court.
In other business, the council passed an ordinance imposing a 25-cent deposit on disposable beverage containers, which goes into effect Sept. 29. Hawk said this measure also was aimed at litter control.