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Moule given green light to expand paint and glass store

Becky Trout

Denying a protest from a couple who live atop Matson Creek, the Grass Valley City Council gave longtime business owner Jim Moule the OK to expand his paint and glass business Tuesday night.

Moule intends to build an expanded Moule’s Paint and Glass across East Main Street on a lot that contains a portion of Matson Creek.

Constructing the 13,500-square-foot building requires encasing 150 feet of Matson Creek, which already flows through a pipe for about 80 percent of its journey from the golf course to Wolf Creek

Barbara Johnston challenged the Planning Commission’s August decision to approve the project, claiming it would flood her Harris Street home, degrade the environment, and increase traffic.

Encasing Moule’s stretch of Matson Creek would raise downstream water levels less than a tenth of an inch, Moule’s representatives pointed out.

And burying the creek is not something done lightly, said Moule’s spokesman Keoni Allen, although he also said “we don’t think this is a significant creek.”

The procedure requires three government permits and the purchase of compensatory wetlands elsewhere.

Originally, the applicants planned to purchase wetlands from Wildlands, Inc. which maintains a preserve in Placer County.

But Councilman Steve Enos protested, requesting that the make-up wetlands are secured in the Grass Valley area, an idea that found favor with the full council.

Traffic is a problem, but the city already has a procedure for limiting the exacerbation of the East Main Street/ Idaho-Maryland Road jam, the council decided.

Moule can move across the street, if he limits use of his 627 E. Main Street to tenants that generate very little traffic. Allen said he has plans for a tenant and can accept the restriction.

Johnston declined to comment following the council’s 4-0 decision, from which Enos abstained.

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