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Starbucks Has Been Given Final Authority To Take Over Wendy’s On Vineyard Avenue In Oxnard, California

Wendy’s restaurant on Vineyard Avenue in Oxnard will be replaced with a Starbucks coffee shop, despite concerns that drive-thru traffic could back up onto adjacent streets as a result of the move.

On Tuesday, the Oxnard City Council ruled in favor of Friedrich Family Limited Partnership, 6-1, in an appeal of their decision. The vote provides the property owner with the special-use permit he requires in order to transform the 2,450-square-foot diner into a Starbucks drive-thru location.

During their Feb. 15 meeting, the City Council directed staff to prepare a resolution allowing the appeal, which was then approved on Tuesday by the council.

According to Hollee King Winegar, a land-use consultant for the property owner, the coffee shop is scheduled to open in early 2023….

Councilman Bert E. Perello, the lone dissenter, stated on Tuesday that after visiting various Starbucks locations throughout Ventura County, he no longer supports the effort.

Perello admitted that he had made a mistake.

In February, Perello expressed concern about the Starbucks’ influence on traffic flow, but he voted in support of the appeal when the subject initially came up for consideration by the council. In accordance with city records, the intersection of Vineyard Avenue and RiverPark Boulevard is one of the busiest in the entire city.

In a staff report, the Planning Commission rejected the Friedrich Family Limited’s application for a special-use permit on January 13, citing the project’s failure to comply with specified standards.

According to Scott Kolwitz, the city’s planning and environmental services manager, the Planning Commission expressed worry last month that drive-thru traffic might back up into the right-of-way.

During peak morning hours, according to an employee estimate, there may be anywhere from 10 to 16 cars in the Starbucks drive-thru at one time. The Wendy’s drive-thru line is currently comprised of five vehicles.

On February 15, according to the report, representatives of the corporation submitted four grounds of appeal with the Municipal Council; however, city officials agreed with the commission’s original ruling and found that the grounds were “without merit.”

A unanimous decision was reached by the council, which then directed staff to produce a resolution approving the appeal.

In a Tuesday statement, Councilman Gabe Teran said that while the proposal has his support, the council would reconsider if traffic congestion became an issue.

The Starbucks will be located in District 2, which Teran represents. “If it doesn’t function, I’ll be the first to call it out, and I’ll seek responsibility to ensure that it isn’t creating an inconvenience, causing traffic congestion, or producing a quality-of-life issue in our community,” Teran said.

The coffee shop, which will have a drive-thru capacity of 16 cars, would expect an average of nine automobiles to queue throughout the day, according to Winegar’s statement from last month. She predicted that between 8 and 9 a.m., drive-thru traffic could approach 18 autos per hour.

According to Winegar, when the line reaches more than 12 vehicles, employees will use a portable gadget to receive orders from the drive-thru in order to keep the number under 16. According to Winegar, the system is intended to shorten the morning queue duration from 18 autos to 12 automobiles by using a single cylinder.

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