A Dollar General store at the northeast corner of Highway 41 and Road 417 was approved 4-0 by the Madera County Planning Commission, and unless appealed, county officials expect construction to begin soon.
“This will be another option for our citizens to shop closer to their homes and generate sales tax dollars without people having to drive to Fresno or other communities,” said Norman Allinder, Madera County Chief of Development Services. “Having more options for our consumers is definitely a benefit.”
Commissioner John Reed, appointed by Supervisor Tom Wheeler of District 5, recused himself from the Sept. 6 vote after public comment both in support and against the store.
The 9,100 square-foot discount store came under public fire in March. Five letters denounced its location for the potential of added congestion, particularly towards residents in nearby Indian Lakes and the area’s fire station. That caused the commission to direct staff to further review any traffic issues before it could return for discussion.
Along with those studies, 33 Conditions of Approval are required of the store, including a left-hand turning lane on Road 417 to enter its proposed 30-space parking lot, additions to meet state codes for fire safety, and a full landscaping and irrigation plan.
The commission’s decision can be appealed within 15 days, which would send it to the Madera County Board of Supervisors for discussion, by paying a $345 fee and filing a form to the county at 200 W. 4th Street in Madera.
The store will bring in an estimated 100 or more customers a day. Four workers are expected to be employed per shift, with two 8-hour shifts per day, according to a checklist submitted to the county by John Shields of the store’s developer, Embree Asset Group of Phoenix.
The next step, without appeal, is for the developer to file for building permits before construction can begin. Matthew Treber, director of the county’s Community and Economic Development Department, said builders expect to commence construction “relatively quickly.”
Dollar General, a chain of variety stores, sells items such as cleaning supplies, pet food, and groceries.
The complete 93-page county report on the project can be seen by going to bit.ly/1QEgLHQ and downloading it, in PDF format, by clicking on “item 1.”