Plans are officially in motion for the front building of the former Weaver Auto Dealer property in Grass Valley.
Lifetime Adoption Center CEO Mardie Caldwell closed escrow on the 400 Idaho-Maryland Road property Friday with plans to open the adoption center in the upper-level show room of the building. In the rest of the building, she will offer services and resources to businesses, the details of which Caldwell said must remain a mystery for now.
“We are unfolding new things that are still confidential,” she said. “I think it’s going to take a few months to get the permits going that we actually need in here.”
The building will undergo some structural changes and upgrades, Caldwell said, including the landscaping.
“There are quite a few things in the back, heaters and air conditioners and boilers that the copper had been stripped out of,” she said. “And all this beautiful landscaping, we’re going to keep it, not just tear it down. We’ll be keeping a lot of the same native plants that are in here.”
Caldwell also plans to update the energy systems.
“We can retrofit the lights to LED, which they didn’t have before, to save, and solar (equipment), so a lot of things will really help that weren’t available seven, eight years ago,” she said.
The location of the property and the parking opportunities are the primary reasons the building has interested her for more than three years, Caldwell said.
Caldwell founded nationwide adoption service Lifetime Adoption in 1986 with offices in Penn Valley and Yuba City and, since earlier this year, Florida.
The office will move to the former Weaver property, but the Penn Valley office with its winery and 16 acres of land, will remain open Caldwell said.
The 30,000-square-foot property built by brothers Tom and Matt Weaver opened in August 2006. With the economic downturn, it closed in October 2008, The Union previously reported.
The property was purchased by Donald P. McCredie March 26, 2012, for $5.1 million and put back on the market months later.
Chris’ Collision, an auto repair shop, purchased the 22,800-square-foot back property early last month.
A majority of the revenue brought into Lifetime Adoption is from out of the area, Caldwell said, which affords the opportunity to bring additional revenue beyond local funds into the area.
Caldwell considered moving the company to Nevada and would have followed through without the Weaver property, which would have cost 30 local workers their jobs, she said.
“So it’s been really wonderful that we have this,” she said. “We take care of our employees, and they spend money here. Seventy-five percent are sole providers, and a majority live in Nevada County, so it will be nice to have them closer.”
Caldwell said she jumped on the escrow process within three days of the news that the property was available, which became even more convenient after it was divided.
“I felt it would be ideal for our plans,” she said. “We’ve been working with other business owners who have been really great and a lot of other contractors, giving vision to what they feel this needs.”
Caldwell has lived in Nevada County since the mid-1990s, and she hosted business classes in town with hints at the continuation of such assistance with the new building.
She will offer more information when her plans are finalized, she said.
“One of the things I want to do is bring other resources to businesses and small entrepreneurs to help them thrive and bring tourism to Nevada County,” she said. “I think that’s about all I can say right now.”
To contact Staff Writer Jennifer Terman, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 530- 477-4230.