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Wendy’s planned for Grass Valley

Paulette’s Country Kitchen in Grass Valley may soon be the site of a Wendy’s fast food chain, if approved. Grass Valley’s Development Review Committee looked at the proposal Tuesday.
Elias Funez

After three decades in the business, Paulette Rickard, owner of Paulette’s Country Kitchen in Grass Valley, said she’s ready to move on.

“I felt like it’s time to enjoy my new grandson and travel and enjoy life. I’m alive right now and I really just feel like it’s time for the next chapter in my life.” said Rickard, who tested positive for COVID-19 and is still struggling with the symptoms.

“Right now there’s no way I’m capable of running a business right now. I don’t have the energy. I’m out of breath just sitting here talking to you,” she said.



Rickard said the process to sell the building began in September and is still ongoing, with escrow expected to close in the spring. However, it was only last Friday that she discovered the developer had plans to convert it into a Wendy’s.

On Tuesday the city’s Development Review Committee approved an application to allow the building at 875 Sutton Way to be converted into a Wendy’s.



The Grass Valley Planning Commission is expected to take up the item at its February meeting.

People are able to submit public comments by calling 530-274-4390 or emailing public@cityofgrassvalley.com.

REACTION

Rickard said her employees and even family members were shocked when news of the potential sale became public.

“I hadn’t even told my kids anything was going down, like nobody knew,” she said. “We didn’t know that was gonna pass all the meetings, all the approvals.”

According to Rickard, she didn’t want to announce anything prematurely, knowing a lot can change in the three months before escrow closes. Now, her employees are angry they were kept in the dark.

“All my employees are quitting right now, I don’t even know if I might be able to open tomorrow,” she said. “I wanted to keep it open until it’s sold, but I don’t know if that’s gonna happen.”

She said she’s hopeful the community reaction does not affect the sale.

During the meeting the city’s principal planner, Lane Lowe, responded to public comment concerns that a corporation would replace Paulette’s, which has operated for over 25 years, rather than a small business.

“We don’t pick and choose who occupies these sites,” Lowe said. “That’s not something that we do. It’s a private endeavor.”

The developer’s plan calls for demolishing the 3,600-square-foot building in order to replace the drive-thru, making a larger one, and to bring the building up to code.

The building will be reduced to 2,400 square feet and will include 250 feet of outdoor eating space.

To contact Staff Writer John Orona, email jorona@theunion.com or call 530-477-4229.

LEARN MORE

Grass Valley Planning Commission agenda: http://www.cityofgrassvalley.com/agendas-minutes-meetings

 


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