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Montrose business owners change their tune on Starbucks

September 06, 2012|By Brittany Levine, brittany.levine@latimes.com

The controversy over Starbucks opening along a strip of mom-and-pop shops in Montrose appeared to have subsided Thursday during a meeting of business leaders who applauded the coffee shop’s new manager.

The warm welcome was different than the initial reception given the Starbucks, slated to open on the corner of Honolulu Avenue and Ocean View Boulevard Friday.

When Starbucks began planning to move to the Montrose Shopping Park, some retailers said the chain conflicted with the area’s small-town feel. Others opposed Starbucks because it wanted to use fewer parking spaces than required by city code.

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But in February, city officials approved the coffee shop’s parking plan and on Thursday morning, employees were bustling inside the store, which is across Ocean View from a Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf store.

At the Montrose Shopping Park Assn. meeting, manager Joe Agnone said the Montrose Starbucks will not sell alcohol like some other locations in Southern California, such as in Calabasas. Earlier this year, the company announced plans to sell beer and wine at a handful of stores.

“We decided it was best not to serve alcohol at this locale,” Agnone said.

Restaurant and shop owners nodded in approval.

“That’s good,” said Steve Pierce, ambassador for the shopping park.

The Starbucks will be open 5 a.m. to 11 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 30 minutes later on weekends.

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Follow Brittany on Google+ or Twitter: @brittanylevine

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