Pondering startup, location help

Babuga

New member
Feb 23, 2006
1
0
i am seriously thinking about starting up a drivethru. i live in a small town(they say its a city but its a town 10,000 people) with a community college of @ 4k students except for summer, maybe 500.
Its a dry county, ie: no beer/liquor.
Nearest other coffee shops are 30 miles north and south of here in larger cities both starbucks.

have 2 options for location im checking on. one is at a 3way corner at end of Main and a hwy. problem is 2lane hwy, 2lane main. lots of traffic backups. probably will be expanded in the next 5 yrs.

other is bypass road mainly used by people coming from expressway thru town to college or (flinch) walmart. problems are planning on building stripmall there, miss half my choice customers(Country club people).

which sounds better?

i know i want to do this, and i know that it will be lots of work. but im prepared to do what i have to. well , not sell my kids but close.

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gazebocoffee

New member
Mar 2, 2006
6
0
You really have to be careful here. If you have traffic backing up they won't want to get out of line to come to you. Also, if you are not convenient for them to enter and exit your spot(s) then they won't come in. As to a community college, not a good consideration as your sole determinant for opening a drive thru. Most commuters will have already had their coffees at home. I don't think you have the market yet for a profitable drive thru. With no coffee shops in the area, routines are already set and it will be very difficult to break into those routines. Sounds to me like you are trying to create a market instead of responding to the needs of one.
 

morrisn

New member
Mar 27, 2006
126
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I disagree with the comment that most commuters will have already had their coffees at home, with todays busy lifestyles most people do not have time to have coffee at home or are looking for a good quality beverage for their drive or to take to work. If you provide a excellent product you will create a market.
 

MontanaMama

New member
Mar 10, 2006
49
0
morrisn said:
I disagree with the comment that most commuters will have already had their coffees at home, with todays busy lifestyles most people do not have time to have coffee at home or are looking for a good quality beverage for their drive or to take to work. If you provide a excellent product you will create a market.

I agree. :)
 

Coffee Guy

New member
Oct 19, 2003
874
0
Seattle,Washington USA
Hold on for a moment. I realize that what you are describing sounds like a good opportunity, but you need to dig a little deeper. For example you must obtain the demographics for the area you are looking at setting up shop. You mentioned that you are in a town of about 10,000 people of which 4,000 are students? You must first ask yourself, what percentage of those people have the disposable income to buy on a consistent basis? Then look at how many of those are going past you on the way to work in the morning? So if I understand correctly, only 6k of the 10k are commuters? Next lets look at the college scence, I know when I was in college I didn't have the extra money to spend, especially on a daily coffee that would cost me over $2 per day. Then you must consider the student population drops from 4k to 500??? Wow! that's a huge drop, how will you make that up assuming that you will have a large student clinetele? These are just a few things to think about before you bet the farm. I'm not trying to scare you, but just give you some more things to think about before you jump ahead :wink:
 

evshaw3

New member
Jun 6, 2006
4
0
Whats the reality of published traffic counts?

My wife and I are in a war of words of what is a great traffic count and what does that mean? If your count is 25000 cars a day does that mean that you only count on 12000 passing by in the a.m.? If I go out and count 160 cars every 5 minutes during the 6-9 a.m. rush is this good and is this really what I am looking for? Finally what is a good a.m. traffic count going by every hour, for me to consider a drivethru, I am already a licensee but looking for the right location. My first site selection is a "B" mall with easy access and visibility on the morning side, a lease agreement of 1,500.00, 145 cars every 5 minutes a.m., and avg. hh income of 80,000. Bigbucks is 1 mile away and wrong side of street and does quite well. Any and all "positive" suggestions would be hugely appreciated.
evshaw3
 

morrisn

New member
Mar 27, 2006
126
0
Start Up Location

I see questions about your towns population, I wish I had a population of 10,000 or even 6000. We are located in a small town of 3500 but we get approx 10 % of the population through the doors daily. For a location, I am not fond of malls but prefer a building in the business district with banks and stores around you, they have the money to spend and will keep you in business.
 

evshaw3

New member
Jun 6, 2006
4
0
My site selection is a small mall that really offers nothing more than a parking lot that isnt being used and three cubside access points within 600 fet of each other. My traffic is what I am after, three oportunities to drive in or out of the mall, an office building next door with 200 vehicles in the parking lot, a hospital 1/3 mile away, morning side traffic, and a reported 2005 traffic count of 25,000 VPD. I dont want to mess this up, because the expense of moving this building to somewhere else could run up to 50k. Im trying to seperate this from being "My Pet Site" because it is so close to my house, but so many realtors are telling me the same old song and dance about how there owners wont be up for this concept, and I havent even started with the city yet. I am very motivated with this concept and wish to open multiple sites, but I want to do it right. Any and all suggestions or comments.... bring it on!
evshaw3
 

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