Leon’s expansion plans change

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The owners of Leon’s Garage, 326 E. Fifth St., have put a pause on plans to include a microbrewery at 129 N. Oak St., Marysville. Initially, expansion plans for Leon’s Garage included the construction of a microbrewery nearby. Recently, the owners said they will focus on the restaurant expansion, which includes a venue for live music. The brewery could be added later. (Photo submitted)

Outdoor stage, brewery axed
A proposed brewery for the Marysville Uptown is on hold, at least for now.
Last year, Bruce Daniels and Rick Crago, owners of Leon’s Garage, 326 E. Fifth St., Marysville, proposed expanding the restaurant and adding a microbrewery to the area. This week, the pair announced changes to the proposed project.
Daniels said the brewery and brewery structure originally planned for the expansion are no longer part of the plan. Additionally, the rear roll-up door for bands to face outside has been eliminated and the Leon’s building has been extended by six feet.
Last year, the city’s design review board approved the original expansion plan which included the microbrewery.
Daniels said he expects the changes to be met positively by neighbors noting that they, “should line up more favorably with their primary concerns.”
Daniels and Crago sent a letter to neighbors and those who participated in neighborhood meetings.
“In the interest of transparency, you are hearing it from us first,” they wrote.
In an email to the Journal-Tribune, Kathleen Croy, whose mother lives near the restaurant and who has opposed the project, initially called the announcement, “a piece of great news” noting the new design is “great for the neighborhood.”
When she learned the music venue could be added later, she called it “a crafty plan.” She said she still has questions about the project.
Daniels said that after eliminating the outside concert venue, the project will have additional parking spots.
A mural is planned for the back of Leon’s where the roll-up door would have been.
“The property is still laid out for the brewery to go on it, but it just isn’t time yet,” Daniels said.
He added, “we want to really concentrate on our expansion and our music venue.”
Daniels said that as part of the change, the site will have “a little bit more of an elaborate music venue than we had planned.”
He said the entire project is ambitious and he wants to make sure each element is done well. He called the new approach, “eating the elephant, a bite at a time.”
“We just thought we want to do one thing, get one thing done right and see how it goes,” Daniels said.
He added, “everything we do, we want to do it right. You only get one chance to make a first impression.”
Daniels said that once the music venue is operational, officials will “see how it is going” and make decisions about the microbrewery and other possible plans.
To make room for the project, two buildings on the block will be demolished.
Daniels said he believes the demolition will begin in early March.
The letter to the neighbors indicated that officials, “will keep you all notified of anything that may disrupt your normal day-to-day. We expect this to be very minimal and will give as much notice as possible.”
The entire project is located within the city’s Uptown Commercial zoning district.
The new plan is scheduled to go in front of the design review board on March 10.



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