By Misty DUPLESSIS
After months of construction at the corner of Ocean View Boulevard and Honolulu Avenue, it’s just down to hours when the area’s newest Starbucks will welcome customers to its store.
According to a statement from Starbucks, “We look forward to opening the doors at our new location in Montrose this Friday, Sept. 7. We took great care in designing this store in order to feature the historic building’s original architecture. Additionally, this location will offer expansive indoor and outdoor seating to allow our customers to connect with each other over their favorite beverage. We’re very excited to welcome the Montrose community to this location!”
Residents, however, are divided when it comes to rolling out the welcome mat for the new Starbucks.
Ann Partida was recently enjoying a drink purchased from what will be Starbucks closest competitor – Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf – that sits at the southwest corner of Ocean View and Honolulu. Partida was in favor of Starbucks coming into the shopping park, saying that she liked the idea that it will offer more choices for coffee connoisseurs.
“I think it’s a good idea because I have been coming here a lot during the evening to hang out with friends,” she said. “Sometimes there are not enough seats [at Coffee Bean].” She added that she is a fan of Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf as well as Starbucks.
But not everyone shares her enthusiasm. Locals Anna Ryan and Michael Payton are not happy with the new coffee house because they feel there are plenty of Starbucks located just up the street.
“I think Coffee Bean has been here for a long time and it [might affect their business],” said Ryan adding that she will continue to support Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf.
As people walked the streets with coffee cups in hand, some said it was “a good idea” while others felt that a Starbucks would not fit the small town charm of the Montrose Shopping Park.
“I am a little bit bummed that there is going to be a Starbucks shop here. I would have preferred a family owned coffee shop,” said Precious Sandoval.
Though many have voiced their opinion on the subject, not everyone sees it as a debate, but rather an opportunity to bring needed income to the area.
One business owner near the new Starbucks site said he has not given much thought to the changes that will take place.
“We’ll see how things unfold; I just think it’s irrelevant actually,” he said. He is not worried about parking, a concern that has been voiced frequently. He said that if parking is the only thing that he has to battle it means that businesses are getting more traffic.
La Crescenta resident Cara Davis took a pragmatic approach to the change at the corner of Ocean View and Honolulu.
“I know that corner spot is expensive,” said Davis. “I have seen a lot of things in and out of there and it seems [like a good thing if] someone can afford to stay there.”