Tuesday Aug 16 2011
Foothills fixture Chevreaux Aggregates sold to Teichert, Auburn Manor Holdings
By: Gus Thomson, Journal Staff Writer
After 65 years of Auburn family ownership, Chevreaux Aggregates has been sold to a partnership made up of Sacramento’s Teichert Materials and Rocklin’s Auburn Manor Holdings. Dana Davis, Teichert Materials president, said the partnership has now exercised its option to purchase all the assets of the Chevreaux business, which had been owned by the Chevreaux Family Trust. The family’s patriarch, Joe Chevreaux, arrived in Placer County from Oklahoma during the 1930s and found a job operating a dredging machine at a gold mine. The job gave him the opportunity to learn the gravel business and he started his own operation in 1946 by opening a gravel quarry in Meadow Vista. In 1947, Chevreaux established a concrete plant at Highway 49 near Marguerite Mine Road. Both operations, as well as a fleet of blue and orange trucks, became a fixture in the community over the next six decades and were part of the sale concluded in late spring. Davis said the sale, for an undisclosed amount, came after Teichert had operated the plant with an option-to-buy in place for about two years. The two sites are now idled because of the drop in demand for concrete products caused by decreased new-housing construction, Davis said. “The demand in the market area is at record lows but the partnership hopes to operate the site as soon as demand increases,” Davis said. When it reopens, the Meadow Vista site will be renamed Bear River Aggregates and the Auburn location will be Bear River Ready Mix. “We don’t anticipate any changes other than making improvements to ensure we run our facilities in compliance with regulations,” Davis said. Teichert is a 125-year-old Central Valley construction and materials business that continues to be family-owned and operated. Auburn Manor Holdings, which includes Rocklin’s Western Care Construction, is a holding company led by Sacramento-area businessman Martin Harmon. In Meadow Vista, reaction to the sale was mixed. “I went to school with some of the (Chevreaux) kids,” said Sandy Hennig, a lifelong Auburn-area resident. “I’ve noticed that the trucks haven’t been running. It’s hard for a small business to make it these days.” Meadow Vista’s Kevin Ely said that when he was working as a golf course grounds manager he discovered that Chevreaux sand from the Meadow Vista site is highly prized on golf course sand traps. The Chevreaux location has been questioned by some in the community but Ely said he’ll welcome the new ownership and potential for jobs. “I’m very pro-business,” Ely said. “If there wasn’t a plant there now, I might be against it. But they’ve been there since 1946 and I don’t think they should be disallowed from doing business.” Casey Conway said Chevreaux has meant much to the community over the years, providing donations of concrete for several recreational projects and jobs for locals. “It’s sad to see those big trucks just sitting there,” Conway said.