Bernie Truax’s development plan for the vacant parcels that bracket Town Square Park in Old Town was approved this week by the Temecula Planning Commission.
The plan — which was praised by each of the commissioners — calls for two three-story buildings that will house an indoor farmers market, two restaurants, rooftop and patio dining areas with views of the hills to the west, electricity hookups for concerts and special events and public restrooms.
The farmers market will be similar to the popular outdoor version that is held on Saturday mornings in Old Town. As sketched out by Truax, there will be kiosks inside the buildings that will offer local wines and craft beers, specialty items and artisan food: cheeses, pastries and the like.
Truax said he’s working with a partner who runs similar markets in other parts of the country and he’s confident it will be fully leased when the buildings open in two years or so.
One of the restaurants will offer food that can be enjoyed on a patio or in a picnic setting on the Town Square’s grass. The other will be more “formal,” Truax said.
The grand plan for the Civic Center, which the city built almost 10 years ago with Redevelopment Agency funding, has long called for this sort of development on the parcels.
There is no new parking associated with Truax’s Town Square development but he is building a parking garage on land nearby that could be used to offer valet service for visitors.
The free public garage connected to the Civic Center also will be available.
Truax said crews will be working on his new garage and his Old Town luxury hotel project while construction of the Town Square buildings moves forward.
During negotiations with Truax, the city included conditions that called for the public restrooms, which will be situated on the far western edge of the development, and the electricity hookups.