The building has been constructed and the logos installed for the new Starbucks in Mount Airy, but it will still be awhile before the coffeehouse actually opens, according to a developer for the project.
An opening date in October is eyed for the incoming business at 1996 Rockford St. (U.S. 601), the former longtime location of Long John Silver’s. The old restaurant was razed in 2016, when construction also began to house new occupants.
Starbucks will be one of four businesses adjoining each other at that site, which also include a Jimmy John’s sandwich shop, an AT&T cell phone store and another yet to be named.
The pending arrival of Starbucks has drawn particular interest in the local community, due to the growing popularity of coffee consumption as a customer experience stressing freshness and quality in exotic forms such as espresso, caffe latte and whole-bean.
Starbucks’ nearest locations to Mount Airy are now in the Winston-Salem area.
In addition to the iconic logos — depicting a twin-tailed mermaid, or siren as known in Greek mythology — a drive-through station is visible at the new Starbucks. But much preparation remains to be done on the inside, said Jason Swain of Swain & Associates, a Wilmington firm that developed the new business location.
The upfit of the Starbucks — the process of modifying a new space to accommodate a tenant’s specific needs — now awaits before it can open, according to Swain.
“I think you’re probably going to see some work on the inside soon,” he said.
“My estimate is that will take them about 120 days,” Swain predicted. “That puts the opening at about the time of the Autumn Leaves Festival (an annual event here scheduled for Oct. 13-15).”
Starbucks is headquartered in Seattle.
Meanwhile, the AT&T phone store launched its operations about two weeks ago.
“Jimmy John’s will be opening soon,” Swain said. The new Jimmy John’s also has attracted much interest.
That chain specializes in 8-inch submarine sandwiches, giant club sandwiches and even a creation known as the J.J. Gargantuan.
It was founded by Jimmy John Liautaud in 1983 and is headquartered in Champaign, Illinois.
Since its beginning in a garage in Charleston, Illinois, the company has expanded to more than 2,500 outlets in 46 states.
Swain said the development firm also hopes to soon make an announcement about a fourth tenant for the Rockford Street site which he hopes will generate further enthusiasm.
He is from Mount Airy, where Swain & Associates previously was based, and said that it had a special interest in wanting to develop the business complex there.
“We had an opportunity to buy that property,” he said.
That led to plans for Starbucks and the other occupants.
“We thought it would be something the community would really be excited about,” Swain said. “We’re excited about it, too.”
Tom Joyce may be reached at 336-415-4693 or on Twitter @Me_Reporter.