By Nick Kotsopoulos
Telegram & Gazette Staff

August 06. 2015 1:56PM

Worcester gun store gets OK to open shooting range

WORCESTER – The Gun Parlor has been given a green light to operate an indoor shooting range when the retail gun store relocates to a former warehouse on Prescott Street.

The License Commission Thursday granted the business a shooting gallery license for the operation of a 10-lane indoor shooting range there.

The commission approved the license, which has 24 conditions attached to it, after reviewing security plans for the facility.

Commissioner Walter Shea said he was “very impressed” with the proposed layout of the building and the security plans for it.

He said the facility will be designed and soundproofed in such a way that people on the outside will not be able to hear noise generated from inside the building.

Mr. Shea added that he was also pleased to see that a system will be in place to collect and remove used lead projectiles and then having that material recycled.

He also praised the owner for making a blighted building an improvement for the neighborhood.

Karon Shea, commission chairwoman, said security will be in place to monitor activity in just about very corner of the building.

“You have taken every significant step you can think of to make it safe,” she said.

No one spoke against the license before the License Commission voted on it.

The Gun Parlor operates as a retail gun store at 210 Summer St.; it does not include an indoor shooting range.

The business is being forced to relocate because the lease for the building where it has operated the past three years is not being renewed. The building is slated for demolition as part of a plan to build a new hotel in the Washington Square area.

Justin Gabriel, owner of The Gun Parlor, has purchased a 10,000-squre-foot building at 170 Prescott St., the former Greg’s Packing warehouse, where he intends to invest about $1.5 million to convert it into a gun store and indoor shooting range.

The site is abutted by Interstate 290 and railroad tracks to the rear, Rural Cemetery across the street and other businesses to its immediate north and south. The closest homes are 360 feet north of the property line and 450 feet from the building itself.

The Zoning Board of Appeals opened the door for the operation of a retail gun store and indoor shooting range at the Prescott Street location when it granted two special permits for it in June.

At the new location, Mr. Gabriel will also be allowed to sell motorcycles – something he has been doing at his current site.

As part of his approval, the zoning board included a condition that if the owner should ever have his license to operate revoked, the special permits would be revoked as well.

Use of the gun range will be restricted to members only and they must have a valid firearms identification card.

Contact Nick Kotsopoulos at Follow him on Twitter @NCKotsopoulos

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