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Richland amendment makes way for brewpub

| Wednesday, April 10, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

The former Tilt's bar on Bakerstown Road can become a microbrewery, compliments of Richland supervisors.

The supervisors unanimously voted April 3 to amend the township's zoning ordinance to allow, by special exception, the serving — and production — of beer, wine and other alcoholic drinks in neighborhood commercial and mixed-use districts.

The vote followed a public hearing on the amendment, but no one challenged the idea of revising Richland's zoning code to permit “brewpubs” in those quasi-residential zones.

Matt Hough, owner of Hough's in the Greenfield section of Pittsburgh, applied for the amendment to transform Tilt's — located in a Neighborhood Commercial district at 4109 Bakerstown Road — into a full-service restaurant and bar with approximately 90 craft beers on tap.

“We'll also be a brewing and serving our own beer,” said Hough, who plans to also offer gourmet pizzas and catering services at the former pool hall.

But Hough first must obtain permission to execute those plans by applying to the Richland Township Zoning Hearing Board for a special exception to use the former Tilt's as a “brewpub.”

Earlier this year, Hough purchased the bar. He then gutted the interior and plans to install new bathrooms, flooring and a pitched roof.

“It's basically a hollow shell we have to work with,” said Hough, a 2000 graduate of Pine-Richland High School, and former district sales manager for Nucor Steel.

Hough paid $500 to apply for the zoning code amendment, which clears the way for him to reincarnate Tilt's.

Hough also paid a $1,000 to cover the legal cost of preparing the amendment, which also allows brewpubs — without special permission — in commerce/industry, community commercial and restricted light industrial districts of Richland Township.

But the amendment restricts production of beer, wine or other alcoholic beverages to 12,000 or less barrels per pear year. This also mandates that a “brewpub” establishment “derive at least 50 percent of its total annual gross food and beverage sales from the sale of prepared meals or food.”

Deborah Deasy is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-772-6369 or ddeasy@tribweb.com.

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