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Citrus Heights Business Briefs: home prices, $25M sale, FoodMaxx liquor license

An attempt by FoodMaxx to acquire a Type 21 liquor license was halted in a 4-1 vote by the Citrus Heights city council, following resident opposition during a public hearing. // CH Sentinel

Latest briefs for November focus on business news in Citrus Heights, including an investment company buying up a local shopping plaza for $25 million, the city council halting a controversial plan for FoodMaxx to add liquor sales at its Sunrise Boulevard store, and a report on latest home sales and prices in Citrus Heights.

Sunrise Blvd shopping plaza sold for $25M; rehab planned
A west coast investment company has purchased a large shopping center near Sunrise Boulevard and Madison Avenue last month and plans to revamp the property, according to the Sacramento Business Journal. The investors group, Merlone Geier Partners, purchased the Sunrise Village plaza at 5445 Sunrise Blvd. for $25.7 million. Existing businesses at the plaza include Rite Aid, Tuesday Morning, Habit Burger Grill, and the recently opened Sourdough & Co. sandwich shop.

Related: New Citrus Heights sandwich shop to offer soups, salads and fresh bread

Sacramento County property records indicate most buildings in the shopping plaza were built in 1975. The 150,000-square-foot center also has “quite a bit of vacancy,” a Merlone Geier vice president told The Journal. Specifics about future rehab plans and dates were not disclosed, but the investment company is known for acquiring properties and seeking to add value through “lease-up, repositioning, redevelopment or improved management,” as stated on its website. The company reportedly owns roughly 150 properties on the west coast, totaling 26 million square feet. (See full Journal story)

Data: Citrus Heights home sales rose, but prices dipped during Sept.
Average Citrus Heights home sale prices dipped an average of about 2% in September — but overall home sales increased significantly — according to the most recent data reported in The Sacramento Bee. Monthly home sales in Citrus Heights rose from a total of 112 homes closing escrow in August up to  146 homes closing escrow in September, the most recent month data is available.

Although home sale prices dipped slightly in month-over-month comparisons, year-over-year comparisons show prices are up compared to 2016. In the 95621 zip code, which covers the western half of Citrus Heights, home sales are up 15.1%, rising from an average of $265,000 in September last year up to $305,000 this year. In the 95610 zip code, which covers the eastern half of Citrus Heights, home sales are up 7.6%, rising from an average of $316,000 last year up to $340,000 this year. The report included data for sales of detached single-family homes and also included price comparisons of homes sales of all zip codes in the Sacramento region, through September. (See full report)

Citrus Heights council stops proposed FoodMaxx liquor license, following opposition
In a divided 4-1 vote following a controversial Oct. 26 public hearing, Citrus Heights council members shot down a request by the FoodMaxx store at 6982 Sunrise Blvd. that would have allowed the store to sell distilled spirits, in addition to beer and wine already sold at the location. Resident Nancy Graham, who is president of the neighborhood association where FoodMaxx is located, told The Sentinel she was “very pleased that the city council understood our concerns” in voting against allowing the liquor license.

Mayor Jeff Slowey was the lone vote in support of the “Letter of Public Convenience and Necessity,” which the store needed to obtain before a Type 21 liquor license could be approved by the state’s department of Alcohol Beverage Control (ABC). Slowey argued that consumers typically purchase liquor while shopping at a grocery store and shouldn’t have to make a separate trek to another store for liquor. The remaining four council members sided with residents who spoke at the public hearing, arguing that while the addition of liquor sales could be a convenience for some, they are not a “necessity” in an area which already has six Type 20 and 21 licenses.

ABC sets standards for the number of alcohol licenses allowed per census tract, but allows cities to authorize additional licenses through approving letters of public convenience and necessity. ABC has set a guideline of three licenses for the area around FoodMaxx; but a total of six licenses are currently in use. FoodMaxx had previously sought a Type 21 license in 2007 and was also denied approval by the city council.

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