Note: This story originally ran in The Sentinel’s April 2 Weekend e-Edition. Click here to sign up to receive our free Weekend e-Edition each Sunday.
Wondering what’s going on with those vacant pads in front of Costco and Walmart on Auburn Boulevard?
Although development at the Stock Ranch Plaza appears to have stalled since Applebee’s Bar & Grill opened in late 2015, CBRE Senior Vice President Jon Schultz, the property’s leasing agent, told The Sentinel in an update last Thursday that construction of a new building at the site is “ready to launch.” He also said several deals are currently pending with multiple future tenants.
Schultz said development at the site has been delayed due to some pending traffic flow redesigns in the parking lot, which he described as minor modifications to help with traffic. Senior Planner Casey Kempenaar, with the City of Citrus Heights, confirmed the city had recommended traffic flow improvements at the location and said the planning division is currently reviewing a submitted plan that addresses circulation and environmental issues.
The proposed modifications, as shown on the city’s website, indicate minor changes to the main traffic loop and also show “enhanced pavement” at stop signs and areas where pedestrians would likely be crossing traffic.
Schultz confirmed nine pads are to be developed and leased at the site, but said he couldn’t make “any particular announcements” about which businesses would be opening at the site.
The latest site plan submitted to the city also shows nine buildings, ranging in size from a 2,300-square-feet restaurant along Auburn Boulevard, to various retail buildings that range from 5,000 to 8,500 square feet. Another large 34,000-square-feet building is also shown on the site plan, located on the eastern side of the existing entry road in front of Walmart.
Amor Taylor, who ran for city council last year and currently sits on the city’s construction board of appeals, previously announced during her campaign that she would be opening up a Menchie’s Frozen Yogurt shop in one of the vacant pads in front of Walmart. In an interview with The Sentinel last month, she confirmed plans to open the new location and is hopeful for a grand opening in 2018.
Taylor said a Five Guys Burgers and Fries restaurant would also be opening in the shopping plaza, but future tenants were not able to be confirmed with Schultz and the city confirmed no permits have been submitted for any of the pads, as of last month.
Although the site plan only indicates one future restaurant in the plaza, Schultz said the plaza is “not really limited” to a sole restaurant. As previously reported on The Sentinel, 2015 amendments to the Stock Ranch Guide for Development indicated an intent to attract a drive-thru restaurant at the plaza.
New construction in the commercial-zoned district is governed by the Stock Ranch Guide for Development, passed by the city council in 2001 and most recently updated in 2015. Development of the area began with Costco in 2003 and Walmart in 2005, followed by city council approval in 2008 for a 14,000 square feet Fresh & Easy store — but those plans fell through when Fresh & Easy’s parent company withdrew its development plans in the United States entirely.
Further development in the plaza remained dormant until April 2015, when Applebee’s received approval to construct a new restaurant.
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