MOUNT VERNON – Knox County's first stand-alone Starbucks is likely to open within the next week, according to the construction superintendent managing the project.
Jeff Fairchild, superintendent at Plain City-based CCS Construction, said the target opening date is June 17. The new shop, located at 989 Coshocton Ave. in Mount Vernon, will feature a drive-thru, outdoor patio seating and 25 parking spaces.
"It is 98 percent complete," Fairchild said Tuesday.
The vast majority of the work on the property is finished, Fairchild said. All that's left to do is reseal the parking lot, install the final pieces of furniture and clean the interior.
The site received approval from Knox Public Health on March 1, according to Environmental Health Director Nate Overholt. The health department will conduct one final inspection this week, he said, before next Thursday's opening.
This will technically be Mount Vernon's second Starbucks, as there is already a shop located inside Kroger, half-a-mile down the road. But it will be the city's first stand-alone location with a drive-thru, as well as additional inside seating.
It's unclear how many people the store will employ, or why Starbucks chose to open a stand-alone location in Mount Vernon. The company has not responded to requests for comment over the last year.
The new Starbucks will be located in front of Valley Plaza Shopping Center, a six-store strip mall at 993-1005 Coshocton Ave. that includes Harbor Freight and Fiesta Mexicana.
The one-acre lot – and the 2,495-square-foot building that sits on it – used to be a part of the shopping center, but was split off by developers following approval from the Municipal Planning Commission last June.
The city approved site engineering plans for the property's redevelopment last September, records indicate. In the months since, Fairchild's team has renovated the property, installing a brand-new facade and drive-thru (the building had previously housed a hair salon).
The project has experienced several COVID-related delays, Fairchild said, as the pandemic has disrupted the supply chain. But it's nearly finished now, after a year of preparation and execution.
Starbucks, the world's largest coffee chain, currently has more than 15,000 locations in the U.S. and 30,000 across the globe. The closest stand-alone locations to Mount Vernon are in Sunbury and Mansfield.
The shop offers more than 30 blends of coffee, as well as a variety of hot and iced espresso beverages, refreshers and teas. It also serves baked pastries, cold and hot sandwiches, salads, salad and grain bowls, oatmeal, yogurt parfaits and fruit cups.