Heat on plans for taco spot | TheUnion.com

Heat on plans for taco spot

The Union Staff
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Whether a drive-through, fast-food restaurant should be built on Mill Street will be up for discussion before the Grass Valley Planning Commission tonight.

Plans for the future Paco’s Tacos – a 1,425-square-foot one story building on .47 acres at the corner of French Avenue and Mill Street – have drawn criticism from nearby residents who say the eatery will generate too much traffic, trash and odors. Residents on French have long complained that cars speed up and down the windy road.

The restaurant will be built in the Gold Rush style, complete with a decorative tower and chimney pipe, preliminary drawings show.

After hearing complaints from the general public Oct. 15, the commission appointed commissioners Dale White and Paul Aguilar to study the plans and make recommendations to the full commission.

White and Aguilar both said Monday the number of extra cars the drive-through could generate on Mill and French could create traffic safety problems.

The project is very nicely designed but may be at the wrong place, White said. “I just have some serious concerns … French Avenue is a very, very difficult street.”

Mill is now undergoing a series of improvements and will be the major gateway for historic downtown Grass Valley, White added.

“They’re trying to do so much in a limited amount of space,” concluded White of the applicants, David and Susan Wambaugh of Rough and Ready.

Kevin Nelson of Nelson Engineering, who drew site plans for the Wambaughs, said Monday his clients have agreed to build a right hand turn lane from French into his facility, preventing cars from stacking up on the street.

Karl Resch co-owns the Swiss House, a restaurant across the street. Resch does not oppose either a restaurant or a professional office for the vacant lot, he said Monday. But a fast food restaurant would generate too much traffic and belongs in the Brunswick Basin, he said.

“When you look at the Brunswick Basin, it looks like Las Vegas,” Resch said. “That’s what we want to avoid here.”

David Wambaugh declined comment Monday, saying his attorney has advised him not to talk to reporters before the meeting.

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