Lacey council approves permit to fill longtime business vacancy

The Lacey City Council on Thursday cleared the way for a longtime business vacancy in the city to become home to another business.

The vacancy was created by the former Boulevard Checkered Flag Auto Service and Repair business at 4207 Pacific Ave. SE after it closed in 2010 and then was deemed “abandoned” by the city because the site was inactive for 18 months.

But Thursday, five members of the council unanimously approved a conditional use permit, with conditions, for property owner Rashid Gahfoor to “operate an automotive-repair/service station, with a potential automotive-parts retail component,” according to city information.

Among a long list of conditions: “The existing service bay doors shall be removed or altered in order to prohibit vehicular access to the building from the front facade. Vehicular service entry to the building shall be made from the rear of the structure only,” according to city information.

Gahfoor was not in attendance Thursday night. Also not in attendance were Lacey Mayor Andy Ryder and Councilman Michael Steadman.

Associate city planner Samra Seymour told the council that the site has been home to an automotive repair shop since the 1960s.

Councilman Jeff Gadman said he was excited to see a project use an existing building, but he also wondered about any exit or entrance issues with the business next door, Olympic Crest Coffee Roasters.

Seymour said Olympic Crest was sent a notice about the project but the city didn’t receive any comment. Given the amount of space between the two businesses, Seymour didn’t see a potential conflict.

Also Thursday night: