It's not yet known when the famed BBC building in downtown Menlo Park will be open for business as a new restaurant and bar, but progress on the building is being watched carefully.
So carefully, in fact, that when the owner, Rob Fischer, installed metal roll-up security doors at three of the building's entrances, it was soon brought to his attention that those doors were not permitted and needed clearance from the Planning Commission.
So he pleaded his case for the doors before the commission on Nov. 7 and his request was approved unanimously.
Mr. Fischer told the commission there is a need for additional security at the building due, he said, to the threat of people who are transient known in the past to spend time near the train station. The building has a three-floor staircase that people could hide in at night, he said.
Todd Burke, who spoke at the commission meeting, said he is a patron of Mr. Fischer's Peninsula restaurants, which include the Palo Alto Creamery, Reposado, Gravity and Scratch. "I think one factor you need to weigh is no longer delaying the project," he said. "Anyone who has the gumption to bring a restaurant to Menlo Park is either very bold or slightly crazy or some combination of the two. ... I'm in favor of what it is he's doing."
The permit came with an urging to open the restaurant and bar as soon as possible. As Commissioner Henry Riggs said, "Get that thing open. I'm thirsty."