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Date published: 12/5/2012

By Bill Freehling

Downtown business closes due to death

A downtown Fredericksburg business has permanently closed due to the longtime owner's death early last month.

Michael Bender for many years ran Goldbenders at 110 Hanover St. The store offered custom-designed jewelry and repairs.

Bender lived in an apartment above the shop, which was near the Caroline Street intersection. Friends found his body in the apartment last month.

Trish Schornagel, who was a jewelry artist at Goldbenders and has now moved to Gemstone Creations on Caroline Street, said Bender apparently died of a heart attack. Schornagel has been working to make sure everyone who had jewelry at Goldbenders has gotten it back.

Tommy Mitchell owns the 2,300-square-foot building that served as Bender's business and personal home. The building has not yet been re-offered for lease.

Cluster subdivision proposed in Stafford

A 21-home cluster subdivision has been proposed near the intersection of Brooke and Little Whim roads in Stafford County.

Mark Doherty and Jeremy McCommons' Foundation Properties LLC is proposing the Brooke Village development on 9.54 acres just south of Little Whim Road and west of Brooke Road. Dan Webb of Webb & Associates is the project engineer.

The developers have applied for a conditional use permit to allow the cluster plan, in which houses are built closer together in order to keep a large area as open space. A development review meeting is scheduled Wednesday afternoon with Stafford officials.

Stafford officials have been discussing whether changes are needed to the county's recently adopted cluster ordinance.

Doherty and McCommons also own MacDoc Realty as well as several commercial real estate properties in the Fredericksburg area. They regularly buy, fix up and resell homes.

New tenant sought at Lafayette building

The 8,850-square-foot building in Spotsylvania County that has long been home to J.T. Lacy Appliances Inc. is for lease.

The Lacy family has run the appliances store at 3503 Lafayette Blvd. for nearly 30 years. A going-out-of-business sale is now being held, but the company might decide to downsize at a smaller location after the facility is leased.

The property is listed with Lee Cherwek of CBRE.

--Bill Freehling