Controversy Over Historic Lake Charles Shell Beach Home for Sale

Talk of the town recently has been the proposed sale of a Lake Charles historic Shell Beach home that would be re-zoned for a commercial use of an event center and restaurant venue that could seat 150 people.

1301 Shell Beach Drive in Lake Charles LA has been listed for sale for $2.6 million dollars.  The historic Krause-Burton southern estate is located on 9 acres with architecture dating back to 1925.  The property also has a boat house on the Lake and is a treasured local lakefront residence.

Recently the home went under contract with potential buyer/investor, Mazen Hijazi who currently  owns of Mazen’s in Lake Charles.  He wanted to turn the property into an event center that would require additional parking and re-zoning.

This vision created controversy and concerns from many  Shell Beach residents which also caused a long thread of comments posted on Facebook from both pro and con opinions.

The lovely Oak tree canopy backdrop and historic properties along Shell Beach have been admired for years.  So much so, that carriage rides have become popular where residents can admire the homes, especially during the lighted Christmas season.

Part of the objection to the project was that residents think the additional traffic and influx of people would change the dynamic of the neighborhood and potentially affect neighboring property values.

Hijazi had to follow zoning protocol submitting a major conditional use permit application to be heard in front of the Planning and Zoning Committee and gain approval.

During the May 14th Planning and Zoning meeting both sides presented opinions with  Shell Beach residents being very vocal against the project.  The outcome was the Board  voted four to one against the permit request, so the project will not pass.

Anytime a zoning change is required or permit is needed for a new project, the applicant must go before the Lake Charles Planning & Zoning Board.

**6-14-18 update on this post—there is a zoning appeal by Mazen to relocate his existing restaurant to this location.  The City Council will consider the item at 5:30pm June 20 in City Hall**

Marilyn Boudreaux

Lake Charles Realtor

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