A new auto dealership has been given permission to build on a 5.14-acre site between Keyes and Turlock.

Price Honda asked to rezone a 5.14-acre parcel south of Barnhart Road along N. Golden State Boulevard from an expired Planned Development (P-D) (209), to a New P-D. The Stanislaus County Board of Supervisors gave the go-ahead on Aug. 31, with construction set to begin in the spring. 

The dealership would be built in two phases. The first phase calls for a two-story 29,300 square-foot auto dealership building with a showroom, parts storage, offices, and service areas. A 2,048 square foot reception canopy would be attached to the main dealership, a 2,100 square-foot express service center, and 1,500 square-foot car detail building. 

The second phase within 10 years proposes a 3,375 square-foot expansion to the service bay.

The site is located in the county but within Turlock’s sphere of influence. The city of Turlock will supply water and sewer through an Out of Boundary Service agreement requiring approval of the Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO).

Price Ford will be expanding into the vacant lot next door with the addition of Price Honda. 

Despite a development restriction easement on the property which has been in place since 1966 and was supposed to last until 2033, the city of Turlock terminated the restriction and also entered into a tax sharing agreement with the county which will see the city collect 50% of the new dealership’s sales tax revenue and provide both Price Ford and Price Honda’s public sewer and water services. Portions of the sales tax revenue collected from the new Price Honda will be dedicated to future planning, design and construction of the Taylor Road interchange at Highway 99. 

Owners James Figurell and David Price purchased their original Ford dealership, formerly known as Patchett’s Ford, in June 2015 and have since become a philanthropic staple in the community. 

During review of the new Price Honda project, the county planning department discovered two other issues in addition to the development restriction easement: compatibility with the nearby residential neighborhood and the project’s proposed signage.

Sharon Turnbull, who lives and owns several properties along Barnhart Road behind the project site, complained of dust from the project site from vehicle delivery trucks and Price Ford employees parking in the vacant lot — something not permitted under the property’s current zoning. She also said that the current dealership is the cause of speeding cars and semis down Barnhart Road.

“This is getting to be a real nuisance with the racing and stuff down the road,” Turnbull said. “We are an older community, we’re nothing fancy, but we do try to keep our areas clean and neat. Something’s got to be done now.”

Figurell said during the county Planning Commission meeting on Aug. 5 that Price Ford has a policy in place which states employees aren’t to use Barnhart Road, and that he would ensure his staff follows the order. A wall will be built along the backside of the project to act as a buffer between the residential area and dealership, and neighbors will be able to reach the dealership directly should any disturbances occur as part of a Good Neighbor Policy included in the project.

Also, despite the city’s sign ordinance which would not allow for the Price Honda’s proposed 65-foot-tall sign, the approved project will include the signage after the Planning Commission considered a nearby 75-foot Peterbilt sign and the existing 45-foot Price Ford sign along Highway 99.

Supervisor Terry Withrow said the project has been years in the making and “painful,” but was happy to see it finally moving forward. Supervisor Vito Chiesa assured nearby residents that if they had any problems with noise, dust or vehicles driving down Barnhart Road, they could call him directly.

“If I lived on Barnhart, I’d feel the same way,” Chiesa said.