The owner of a vintage car repair shop in Mount Juliet is planning costly changes after the recent installation of fence posts in front of his building, hampering his ability to move the vehicles he works on.
Jim Bennett, owner of Mobiletech Automotive Repair, said the fence posts were pulled up on Wednesday.
Bennett turned down offers on his garage property from an owner of an adjacent gas station and market on North Mt. Juliet Road.
The fence posts were installed towards the rear of the gas station property, said Bennett, who does not dispute the gas station owner’s right to install it there.
But the fence is also close enough to the front of Bennett’s garage and his vehicle doors that it is difficult to get small cars in and out. It also completely bars larger vehicles, like Bennett’s tow truck, from entering and exiting, he said. Bennett also operates a towing business.
Efforts to reach the owner of the gas station were unsuccessful.
Bennett was allowed to delete several messages blocking garage access for 90 days to allow time for changes after a meeting Friday that included the two business owners and Mt. Juliet officials, he said.
Although the meeting gave him time, the owner of the gas station can put the fence posts back in place after the 90 days, Bennett said.
Reconfiguring the garage to put the service doors in the back and use the right-of-way available on the side of the building would cost around $ 10,000, Bennett estimated. Bennett was also asked to hire a structural engineer, submit plans and get a permit. He anticipates that this will increase the cost.
âI know this is his land and he has all the rights, but he has no reason,â Bennett said. “It just creates a huge financial difficulty.”
Bennett’s garage is directly behind the gas station. Bennett said he believed the owner of the gas station was interested in a potential Mobiletech property expansion, based on their conversations.
Bennett plans to hire a lawyer to explore legal options, such as adverse possession and bondage out of necessity, he said.
He has owned the garage for about three years.
He has previously used the back portion of the gas station property to park vehicles with a verbal agreement to mow the gas station lawn, which Bennett says has never been a problem.
Bennett stopped mowing the grass after a stroke in August 2017 that prompted him to stop making general repairs and reduce the need to use the back of the gas station property, a- he declared.
Bennett said he believed walking through the back of the property was decades before he became the owner of the garage.
Contact Andy Humbles at [email protected] or 615-726-5939 and on Twitter @ AndyHumbles.