By Katrina Van Duzee/Garden Grove Journal
Main Street in Garden Grove will be gaining an additional 20 parking spaces in attempt to fill two vacant lots and generate foot traffic for businesses, the Garden Grove City Council voted Tuesday.
The properties located at 12885 and 12891 Main Street have become an eyesore of dust and debris since the current owners stopped the construction of a three-story commercial building due to a lack of funds, the staff report said. M & P Properties, based out of Mission Viejo, owns the land and anticipates construction will not take place for at least another two years.
“The vacant lot on Main Street right now is an eyesore. All that is there are piles of rocks and kids are climbing in there late at night,” said Peter Katz, president of the Garden Grove Downtown Business Association.
The properties were previously occupied by a building, but turned into a vacant lot when the owners demolished it in order to construct a new one. The economic downturn prevented the developer from securing enough financing and now the conjoining lots have remained empty since 2008.
The city plans to lease the property from its owners to build a temporary lot and pedestrian breezeway for public access until the owners secure financing. The initial lease will be for two years with the option to extend the agreement for two additional one-year terms.
“I feel that with the money just sitting there this is a good investment that may save some businesses,” Katz said. “It is a good way to bring foot traffic to Main Street.”
The total cost to lease the land and construct the parking lot will amount to $88,000 and will come out of the Parking District Maintenance Funds.
The plan to lease the property was formulated after commissioners expressed concern over the unsightly condition of the lot at a Main Street Commission meeting held on July 8, 2010. Commissioners and city staff decided using the lot for additional parking would create easier access to the existing West parking lot off Main Street and would serve as an effective way to use the wasted space, the staff report said.
The city council voted 4-1 to approve the lease agreement with Council Member Dina Nguyen voting no. It was not mentioned in the staff report when construction will begin.
“It is a good project and sends a positive message that we are concerned about our businesses and our business on Main Street,” Council Member Andrew Do said.