Drink up: Starbucks returns

It has been eight years since coffee drinkers have been able to pick up a hot cup of Starbucks pumpkin spice latte or a peppermint mocha in Seymour.

But that drought will soon come to an end, as the popular national chain plans to reestablish itself on the city’s east side.

Seymour building commissioner Jeremy Gray confirmed this week that Starbucks is planning to construct a new 1,835-square-foot building at 2103 E. Tipton St. between Chili’s and Circle K.

The new location will give the company the opportunity to attract traffic from Interstate 65, U.S. 50 and U.S. 31, all heavily traveled routes, Gray said.

Starbucks’ closest location to Seymour right now is Columbus, which has four.

Besides a wide arrangement of hot and cold drinks, the coffee shop will feature food items along with free Wi-Fi internet. The new location also will have drive-thru service.

Starbucks had a short-lived history in Seymour when it opened a freestanding location at 1246 E. Tipton Street in Jackson Park Shopping Center in 2006. The property was owned by Regency, which operates the shopping center.

Just two years later, in July 2008, the company announced it was pulling the plug on 600 stores nationwide, including other locations in Indiana, due to the economy.

At the time, Starbucks CEO said the move was to counter “poor real estate decisions that were made that convinced us that these stores would not reach acceptable levels of profitability.”

After Starbucks left, the building was renovated into Little Caesars Pizza, which still occupies the building today.

Gina Darlage, with the city’s planning and zoning department, said the company, which is working through Warner Retail Group in Indianapolis, has filed and received variances to have no sidewalks on the property and to decrease required parking from 25 to 19 spots.

“They will have to submit site plans for approval to the state and to us,” Darlage said.

A representative from Starbucks or Warner Retail Group could not be reached for comment on when construction will begin or when the store is expected to open.

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January Rutherford is a reporter for The (Seymour) Tribune. She can be reached at jrutherford@tribtown.com or 812-523-7069.