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Here we go again...another (!) liquor store/convenience market

August 13, 2017

Do you ever get the feeling that Sacramento County won't be satisfied until every corner in Arden Arcade has at least 4 liquor stores? If so, get ready for more to-go booze and 24-hour junk food. This time it is the SE corner of Arden and Morse that is proposed to be blessed with yet another one of these commercial ventures. Because, heaven knows, we just don't have enough of them, do we? 

“It’s like déjà vu all over again.

— Yogi Berra, on Mickey Mantle & Roger Maris hitting several back-to-back home runs in the 1960s

The public process begins, as usual, at the Arden Arcade Community Planning Advisory Council (CPAC), which will hear the item at its meeting at 7pm on August 24, 2017, in the Arden Middle School small gym at 1640 Watt Ave. The applicant wants permission for a Use Permit to operate a 24 hour convenience store on that corner where the green grocery (once a gas station) has been. The CPAC agenda says the applicant is also asking permission for alcohol sales. Normally, the CPAC has a limited role of ascertaining community sentiment about the Use Permit and forwarding said information to the Planning Commission. But the CPAC also has a role in providing liquor license input directly to the Board of Supervisors if there is a liquor license involved, since the Board of Supervisors makes those decisions (freely and without reservations, it seems). Though there is NO information on the CPAC agenda as to whether the applicant already has a liquor license or will need to get one, the agenda shows the "final hearing body" is the Board of Supervisors -- implying a liquor license determination.  According to the downloadable project documents:

  • The Project Description states the plan is to "convert an under-utilized building from a fruit and vegetable sales operation to a full service convenience food market with beer, wine and spirits offerings."
  • The Project Justification says the new-and-improved market will "provide a pedestrian and bicycle-friendly location to serve the neighborhood"  
  • The Site Plan shows a pedestrian ramp and has no indication of parking for bicycles.

In summary, the proposal is that Arden Arcade, which is overrun with convenience stores, may get another one -- open 24 hours a day and selling liquor, of course, given that there is no where else within 50 feet to buy a cold six pack of beer. And it will be "bicycle-friendly" even though there is no place to park your bike. But it's alright because the building will be shiny and new and will be used more, see? Plus the shopping center two doors down with CVS, Dollar Store and Safeway (open 5am-midnight) is just too far away to be, you know, convenient.  Don't even ask about the undiscussed liquor license piece. The BevMo' next door isn't right on the corner and, besides, the Supervisors hand out liquor licenses like they were candy at Halloween. 

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Will the Southeast corner of Arden and Morse become Arden Arcade's umpteenth 24-hour convenience mart and liquor store?
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