A redesigned proposal for a new KFC restaurant in the Timberhills Shopping Center on Mono Way is going to the Sonora Planning Commission for possible approval at a public meeting on Monday.
The company behind the project wants to eventually tear down the existing KFC at The Junction shopping center in East Sonora and construct an entirely new restaurant in the spot where the building that formerly housed Denny’s currently stands.
Nearly one year ago, the commission postponed issuing a permit for the project until the proposed KFC was redesigned to look more like the other buildings in the center.
Splashy red and white stripes on the building’s exterior in the designs proposed last year have been replaced by a color scheme that incorporates beige tones similar to the rest of the buildings in the center.
Sloped roofs with Spanish tile and stacked rock as opposed to brick along the base of the buildings were also added.
Harman Management Corporation, based in Los Altos, owns the existing KFC franchise in East Sonora and a number of others in the western United States.
The company purchased the land for the new Sonora location for about $850,000.
A commercial real estate broker for Harman Management Corporation told The Union Democrat last month that the company leases the land at The Junction and prefers to own.
There have also been other issues with the current location, including sewer problems that have forced the restaurant to temporarily close.
The company anticipates spending up to about $1 million on the new store, which likely won’t start construction until next year if approved.
In addition to the designs, some residents and commissioners expressed concern about the proposed restaurant’s drive through window causing potential traffic issues in the shopping center and its driveways.
An assessment completed in the past year by traffic engineers from KD Anderson and Associates Inc., based in Loomis, determined the addition of the KFC would not add enough vehicles using the shopping center’s western and central driveways to reduce service below minimum standards or warrant a traffic signal.
The assessment determined the KFC would generate an additional 30 vehicles per hour in the shopping center during the p.m. hours than the former Denny’s, but 52 less during the morning hours because it’s not expected to be open.
There would be 75 more vehicles entering the shopping center’s driveways during the p.m. hours than there are without the Denny’s in operation, though about half of those are expected to be “pass-by” vehicles drawn from traffic already on Mono Way.
At Monday’s meeting, the commission will also re-consider approving a tentative parcel map that would allow contractor Ron Palhegyi to build an additional two single-family homes on land he owns at 1130 S. Washington St.
Palhegyi is building two homes on the parcels and wants to further divide the property to allow for two more.
The commission postponed a decision on the parcel split at its last meeting on Aug. 13 and requested more information related to fire flow requirements and traffic.
City planners determined that an existing fire hydrant in the area met the requirements and that a boulder south of one of the driveways onto the property should be removed to allow for both left and right turning movements onto South Washington Street.
Contact Alex MacLean at firstname.lastname@example.org or (209) 588-4530.