Sonora, CA — The ARCO gas station food court rezoning proposal drew a packed house at the Sonora Planning Commission meeting this week.
As reported here, the owner of the property, located off of Highway 49 and Pesce Way in Sonora, is asking for the gas station to be rezoned to general commercial as he plans to build a 3,700 square-foot food court where a former auto dealership building still stands.
The city council chambers that seats 60 was filled with citizens spilling out into the hallway. Sonora Community Development Director Rachelle Kellogg notes that out of the nearly 20 people that spoke it was evenly split regarding those for and against the project. She adds, “The main concerns were those people that are in the neighborhood concerned about the added traffic impacts and the access up on the northern end of Pesce Way. Those that were in favor of it were speaking on behalf of business growth and how it would be good for the community. They also spoke of the blighted condition of the property and how this will improve the look…Others spoke of the need for a fast food facility on this side of town.”
In the end, the commissioners unanimously voted to recommend the rezoning and certification of the CEQA document for the property to be approved by the Sonora City Council. Kellogg anticipates that the council will hold a public hearing at its May 1st meeting and make a final decision at its May 15th meeting. Kellogg shares that she does not know when building would begin if the council gives its approval as the owner does not yet have a tenant for the food court.