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VCPWA Central Services Division Work Behind the Scenes Gives Life to the County
A once closed down restaurant now has new ownership thanks to the efforts of VCPWA Central Services Agency and a former B & J Drive-In employee
By: Ventura County Public Works Agency
A branch of the Central Services Department, Real Estate Services (RES) provides real estate related services to VCPWA departments as well as other County agencies and departments outside of VCPWA.
Central Service Division's RES team of five dedicated real estate professionals, also provides leasing services, as was the case with Dulce Yebra, who needed help navigating the process to re-open B&J Drive-In, a publicly owned property managed by RES.
It didn't take long after the old restaurant closed for people to start parking old cars with for sale signs on the property, and for the property to be covered with trash and debris. RES was determined that B & J Drive-In would reopen soon and not become a blight on the community.
"When the County Planning Department notified us of the requirements to reopen the restaurant, we knew Dulce and her husband Alfredo Mendez would need our assistance,"
Lopez helped Yebra and her husband Alfredo to navigate planning, building and safety, and the environmental health permitting process, including creating the floorplan for the restaurant; while Thomas Yoshioka, a Real Property Agent for RES, worked to create restaurant equipment documentation and area calculations needed in connection with the county permitting and approval processes, and assisted Lopez.
"Seeing Dulce and Alfredo's hard work and determination result in a successful opening, as well as the dedication and passion to help people demonstrated by all the County employees involved, was a very memorable experience,"
Yebra felt it was important to preserve the legacy of B & J Drive-In for many years to come and for future generations to enjoy. Reopening the restaurant was important for those who live and work in the Saticoy community. When B & J Drive-In closed, the community lost an historic and iconic place to eat, as well as an important part of the local business community.
"B & J Drive-In is very important to us, not because of its business but because of the history behind it," said Yebra. "Its home to the community where so many different cultures have eaten here and memories have been created."
In addition to the leasing services provided to this project, RES provides real property acquisition service for the Ventura County Public Works Agency and other County agencies and departments, and appraisal services for a variety of County agencies and the CEO's Office for feasibility studies, grant proposals, acquisitions and planning purposes.
RES is also involved with the Saticoy Depot property, which was just listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Registration on the National Register of Historic Places provides incentives for preservation of historic properties, including tax incentives and credits, and special building codes to facilitate restoration of historic structures. RES will be working with the County Executive Office, the County Resource Management Agency – Planning Department, County Supervisor Steve Bennett's office, and other interested parties to seek a public-private partnership for the restoration and future use of the Saticoy Depot property.
For more information about Central Services Division and RES, please visit: http://pwa.vcpublicworks.org/