The planning commission in Grass Valley, Calif., approved a proposal by DeMartini RV Sales to build a new sales center amid controversy about the facility’s appearance and impact on a nearby community.
The Union, Grass City, reported that the project includes a 22,400-square-foot facility that would house a showroom and nine service bays. The building would be surrounded by more than 250,000 square feet of impermeable pavement for storing inventory. Together, the building and pavement would cover nearly half of the 11.8-acre site.
Owners Timothy and Margie DeMartini have been in business in Grass Valley since 1975. They have grown the company into a multi-location operation with dealerships in Sacramento, Calif., and Wakarusa, Ind., along with its headquarters in Grass Valley.
The project will go before the city council within 45 days for a final vote.
The Union reported that DeMartini’s annual sales total about $90 million and the company pays nearly $50,000 monthly in city sales taxes – about 10% of the Grass Valley’s total sales tax income, DeMartini said.
If approved, DeMartini said, he plans to open for business by this fall on the former quarry site, which can be fully seen from the Golden Center Freeway.
Commissioners and members of the public had mixed responses to the project.
Commissioner Ralph Silberstein, who voted against it, objected to changing the parcel’s zoning from being a business park to heavy commercial. He said commercial properties are better located farther from the town center.
Resident and professional planner Steve Enos said trees that would be planted on the site would not screen the lot full of recreational vehicles from the view of freeway motorists, as the general plan requires. Enos also objected to the proposed architecture for the building.
Commissioner Gloria Hyde praised the owners and developer, Nevada City Engineering, for improving the facade and landscaping.
Several members of the public expressed concern about the impact of road improvement on habitat near the new RV center along with potential flooding due to run-off from the property.