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Friday, January 18 , 2019, 11:03 am | Fair 60º


Lowe’s Walls Lifted Into Place At Santa Maria’s Enos Ranchos Development

Project to have several new eateries including Cracker Barrel and Chick-Fil-A, developers say

Work speeds along on the Lowe’s store at the new Enos Ranchos development in Santa Maria. Click to view larger
Work speeds along on the Lowe’s store at the new Enos Ranchos development in Santa Maria. (Janene Scully / Noozhawk photo)

Walls have been raised for the Lowe’s home improvement store in the humongous Enos Ranchos development, but it’s the list of new eateries planned for the site that has residents most excited.

For some, it’s the Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, while others are eager to see Chick—Fil-A open in their hometown. Those are just two of the several new restaurants planned for the shopping center on Betteravia Road west of Highway 101. 

“People are happy about Cracker Barrel and Chick-Fil-A,” said Steve Simoulis, development manager for San Luis Obispo-based NKT Commercial.

“People have been driving to San Luis Obispo. There’s one out at Cal Poly — that’s the nearest Chick-Fil-A — so some people from Santa Maria have been driving up there as part of their destination Chick-Fil-A fix.”

Despite a month-long delay due to the recent heavy rains and a need to let the site and materials dry out, Lowe’s is likely to open by mid-August, Simoulis said.

The new Costco, to replace the building a short distance away, also is on track for a late-summer opening, Simoulis added.

Unlike the existing Costco, the new site will include a gasoline station with 24 pumps along with the warehouse. 

Cracker Barrel, touted as a home-away-from-home family dining restaurant providing Southern hospitality, opened in 1969 in Tennessee, and now has 642 restaurants in 43 states.

Also planned for the shopping center are Urbane Cafe, Buffalo Wild Wings, Habit Burger, all new eateries for the Santa Maria Valley. Another Jack-in-the-Box also is planned.  

A sign marks the site of the new Lowe’s under construction as part of the Enos Ranchos development in Santa Maria. Click to view larger
A sign marks the site of the new Lowe’s under construction as part of the Enos Ranchos development in Santa Maria. (Janene Scully / Noozhawk photo)

Simoulis expects most of the restaurants will be open within the next 12 months, with Buffalo Wild Wings and Chick-Fil-A leading the way. 

Leases for other retail tenants have yet to be finalized so NKT officials remained mum about specifics.

“It’s a cool group of tenants because they’re virtually all new to the area,” said Nick Tompkins, owner of NKT Commercial.

“I can say all the leasing is going very well. All the spaces are pretty much spoken for,” Simoulis said. “There’s still just the fine-tuning and all the paperwork to be finalized, but it’s going well.”

The realigned Bradley Road recently opened, connecting the thoroughfare across Betteravia Road.

“That’s a big milestone for us to get Bradley Road open and finished and traffic flowing,” Simoulis said.

Focus turned to improving two roads in the development, Meehan Street and Shepard Drive.

The intersection of Battles Road and Shepard Drive will be closed with detours in place for approximately four weeks, city staff said, to allow crews to complete utility connections, connect the new Shepard Drive to the existing intersection, and completely reconstruct the Battles Road intersection for the Enos Ranchos project. 

Once work that work is done, drivers can expect College Drive to close for a spell so crews can widen the roadway to four lanes.

Just a year ago, the 113-acre Enos Ranchos project made its way through approvals at the Planning Commission and City Council levels, with developers saying they expected construction to move quickly. 

Enos Ranchos also includes auto dealerships along the Highway 101 frontage and a new 90,000 square-foot headquarters for CoastHill Credit Union, with groundbreaking planned later this year and construction set to be done in 2018.

“A lot of other people in the development business have heard our schedule and are asking how we did it,” Simoulis said. “Careful planning and strategic execution.”

Noozhawk North County editor Janene Scully can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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