MENDOTA, Calif. (KFSN) --After dealing with the drought and high unemployment for the past couple years, Mendota city leaders said they're seeing a positive change. On Wednesday officials announced two new businesses are coming to town.
The dirt is moving in Mendota at a lot at Derrick and Belmont Avenues. The work is a positive sign of progress. Mayor Robert Silva spoke to a handful of community members and business leaders to announce McDonalds and AutoZone are coming to town. Valley residents were pleased to hear about the new shopping options. "I think it's great. I love it. We need something like this out here for people that are coming through. For us, we don't have to drive all the way to Kerman or Fresno," said Nellie Gutierrez, Firebaugh
Mayor Silva said the creation of the economic development zone in the city's main corridor has helped streamline applications and offer incentives which made it more attractive for businesses. Silva said the city will see sales tax revenue stay in their community. "This last couple of years they've talked about development on the west side moving at a slower pace because of the water situation and the drought, but we're going to get out of this thing. We are going to succeed."
On Wednesday, leaders stood side by side as they held an official groundbreaking to mark the start of the new chapter. McDonald's owner Jim Abbate said after 15 years, the time was finally right to open up a store here. "It's got good traffic coming down the road. It's central to a lot of residential, it had commercial that's growing, and frankly, when we look where we have restaurants-- this is an empty spot we've been looking at for a long time to fill the gap."
Abbate said they'll be hiring about 35 part time and 12 full-time employees to run the store at first.
People are encouraged to apply to both companies online.
City leaders said this is the first phase for business development in this area.
McDonald's and AutoZone are expected to open this summer.