NEW PALESTINE — Officials associated with the project say getting the Starbucks was some 10 years in the making. The plans are finally a reality with the popular national coffee chain bringing a shop to the area as soon as this summer.
Officials with Starbucks have signed a deal with Tharp Realty to build a one-of-a-kind establishment in New Palestine with ground breaking for the project slated for the spring of 2024. The structure is slated to go in near the intersection of U.S. 52 and CR South 600W (Mt. Comfort Road).
The new building will go on the empty lot to the north, behind Taco Bell and west of Tony D’s Steakhouse. The specially designed Starbucks building will be 2,540 square feet. Previously, all stores were 2,225 feet.
Bill Niemier, who is on the leadership team of Tharp Realty, noted the company he works for owns the land but has entered into a lease agreement with Starbucks, which wants to create a gathering place for the community and build a one-of-a-kind coffee shop.
The developers, Tharp Realty, already had a plan in place for a Jiffy Lube to be built along the railroad tracks, but had been working for several years to get Starbucks on board. That officially happened Monday when Starbucks officials signed the paperwork.
“The Starbucks building will be located between the Jiffy Lube going in and the back side of the Taco Bell,” Niemier said. “So we’ll have two new businesses coming in the new year to that area.”
Tharp Realty will construct the building for Starbucks as their preferred developer.
“We have several of their buildings going up around the state, but this will be the first in Indiana with Starbucks’ new prototype building, which will have that larger footprint,” Niemier said. “Starbucks is wanting to expand the interior area for its customers.”
Officials from the Town of New Palestine say anytime a business decides to plant in New Palestine, which is a growing community, it’s good for the residents.
“I do think this is good news,” New Palestine Town Manager, Jim Robinson said.
Robinson brought up the fact the town already has a couple of local coffee shops in the area, but that people can still support the small mom-and-pop shops while also supporting the larger chain establishment.
“Right now, I have to drive up to Mt. Comfort near I-70 or to Greenfield just to get a Starbucks coffee, and I do it all the time,” Robinson said. “I think there are a lot of people in this community who do that, but who like me also support the local shops as well as Starbucks.”
Robinson noted his only concern is that national chains like Starbucks have more resources to offer much more than just coffee with things like free Wi-Fi and comfortable seating, and that could push the local shops to keep pace.
“In the end, it’s another place, another option for the consumer, and I do think that’s a great thing, and while Starbucks is a little expensive, I personally think it’s worth it,” Robinson said.
Construction on both the Starbucks and the Jiffy Lube, Niemier said, is slated for sometime in the spring of 2024. Niemier noted they expected both projects to be completed around mid-summer, noting it will take anywhere from 60 to 90 days to build the businesses if all goes as scheduled.
“We’re thinking, if all goes well, the Starbucks should be open this summer,” Niemier said. “It’s been a long time coming — nearly 10 years — but good things come to those who wait.”