Adult day care facility eyes move to Auburn

Placer ARC inquires about relocating facility from Meadow Vista
By: Jon Schultz, Journal Staff Writer
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Placer ARC got the go-ahead from the Auburn Planning Commission this week to apply for a use permit that would allow it to relocate its Adult Achievement Center from Meadow Vista to a neighborhood commercial zone in Auburn.

The city’s zoning code did not previously address an “adult day care” in that district, and Placer ARC requested an interpretation of the city’s policy for permission to operate such a facility at the potential new location, according to the commission’s report.

The commission decided at its Tuesday meeting that a use permit would be required in order to operate an adult day care in a neighborhood commercial zone, said Reg Murray, Auburn senior planner.

“The next step for Placer ARC is they got an affirmation for their use, and now it’s a matter of they have to apply to us for a use permit that will go back to the planning commission,” Murray said. “And they will review that use and say, ‘OK, now here’s that use at that specific location. Do we have any problems with it?’”

Placer ARC Executive Director Barbara Guenther did not return a message seeking comment on Thursday, but expressed interest in a property within the city in a letter she sent to the commission in October.

“Placer ARC is interested in purchasing property in the city of Auburn for one of its programs, the Adult Achievement Center, which serves young and older adults diagnosed with intellectual and developmental disabilities,” Guenther wrote in the letter. “Placer ARC has a strong and enduring tradition in Placer County serving such individuals, and particularly in the community of Auburn, where its services were first launched in 1964.”

An average of 65 individuals participate in the services offered by the Adult Achievement Center, and all classes – except the senior group – are out in the community 51 percent of the time each week, according to a program description in the commission’s report.

Some of the individuals participate five days a week, while others are on a part-time basis.

There are several neighborhood commercial zones in Auburn city limits, Murray said, but it is unclear at this time which one is being targeted as the center’s new location.

A few possibilities are off Auburn Folsom Road: at its intersections with Indian Hill Road and Herdal Drive as well as office space near the Maidu Drive and Shirland Tract Road intersection.

The others surround Highway 49: near the intersection of Auburn Ravine Road and Palm Avenue, office property on Blocker Drive and the west side of Nevada Street between Mount Vernon Road and Blocker Drive.

When the planning commission reviews the use permit, it can opt to approve it, approve it with conditions or decline it, Murray said.

According to the commission’s report, the staff believes the typical scope of services and characteristics associated with an adult day care facility “would likely not conflict with or impact other uses permitted in the Neighborhood Commercial zone.”

Activities at the Adult Achievement Center generally include education and development in life skills, community integration, safety, communication, leisure and more, according to a program description submitted to the commission.

Placer ARC wrote that it is also planning to add a thrift store to its program in Auburn.

“We are looking at sites that could accommodate space for a modest donation drop off, moderately sized thrift store, and space for sorting and washing donations,” according to its program description. “By creating such an enterprise within our program, we will be providing an invaluable opportunity for prevocational skill development as well as part-time paid employment for some of our interested clients.”


Jon Schultz can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @Jon_AJNews