Prime Shine Car Wash Approved for Bowling Alley Center

David Fransen

Ground will soon be broken on the site of a proposed bowling alley in Turlock.

But it's not the Ten Pin Fun Center that's being built – it's a new Prime Shine Car Wash, planned for an outlying development pad in the bowling alley shopping center to be located near the corner of Monte Vista Avenue and Crowell Avenue.

The Turlock Planning Commission unanimously agreed to alter Ten Pin's development plan Thursday, allowing the Prime Shine Car Wash to be constructed before the bowling alley. Previously, commissioners had ruled that the bowling center must be constructed first.

“Times change, the economy changes,” said Planning Commission Chairman Mike Brem. “… The fact that we have a good business that wants to put a good business in a location, I don't think we should stop them from doing that.”

When commissioners approved the Ten Pin Fun Center development in November 2010, the site plan required rezoning the land from residential to commercial. Commissioners justified the rezone as the city's General Plan notes a strong need for entertainment facilities in Turlock.

But with Ten Pin's developers unable to secure financing, commissioners agreed to alter the plan.

“It seems like we're always making exceptions,” commissioner Soraya Fregosi said. “So what is the standard?”

Myriad projects have been proposed, then abandoned for the parcel over the years. From low-income housing to private college dormitories, none have gotten as far as the Prime Shine development.

“In a perfect world, we would have built something on this property a long time ago but we haven't,” Brem said.

The Planning Commission ruling allows only the Prime Shine Car Wash to be constructed, and approves no other use without further review. If construction is started in the next year, developers may also begin work on planned office buildings alongside Crowell Road.

Planners noted that allowing the Prime Shine does not alter the overall site plan, which still calls for a recreational business – like the proposed bowling alley. No other business can be constructed without Planning Commission and City Council approval.

By allowing the Prime Shine to be constructed before the Ten Pin Fun Center, the site plan becomes effectuated. The Planned Development would have otherwise expired in 2020, allowing developers to completely abandon plans for a bowling alley, building whatever they so choose.

“The Ten Pin portion of this is really in limbo,” Brem said. “There's no time attached to this or anything else.”

The new facility will not replace Turlock's existing Prime Shine Car Wash, built in 1996 and located near the intersection of Golden State Boulevard and Geer Road. But the new site may move some traffic away from the hectic old Prime Shine, where cars often back up onto the street waiting for a car wash.

“It's our number one store,” said Prime Shine co-owner Evan Porges. “Been that way for the longest time.”

“It's pretty obvious that the need has come for a second Prime Shine here in town.”

Construction could start in as few as 30 days, following Thursday's approval.

“We're teed up and ready to go,” said Bob DeGrasse of L St. Architects, representing Prime Shine.

The 4,699 square-foot Prime Shine Car Wash will sit on 1.13 acres. The development will include a main car wash tunnel, 28 covered vaccuum stalls, and all needed on-site paving and landscaping.

All buildings will be designed to blend in with the neighboring Rite-Aid shopping center. Needed utilities for Ten Pin Fun Center will be installed at the time the Prime Shine is built.

The car wash itself will be “state-of-the-art,” according to DeGrasse. The tunnel will use the latest technology, like a belt-based car conveyor said to be easier to use, and green, water-conserving wash elements.

And the new site should prevent the stack-ups associated with Turlock's existing Prime Shine. Developers planned the queue line to hold more than 20 cars without impacting traffic, or the shopping center's driveway.

Check TurlockCityNews.com for more on the status of the Ten Pen Fun Center.

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