Caffeine Fueled Growth: Arkansas-based 7 Brew Coffee chain plans to open 165 drive-thru beverage stores along Florida’s east coast over the next five years, spanning from the Space Coast to south to Miami.
That’s what Mark Gottlieb, founder and owner of MetroGroup Development, said Thursday night after receiving approval to build the Sunshine State’s first 7 Brew Coffee in downtown Melbourne.
This 530 square foot dual drive-thru cafe is slated for construction at the northeast corner of US 1 and Palmetto Avenue on the grassy lot next to Wawa.
7 Brew Coffee was founded in February 2017 with a store in Rogers, Arkansas. Today, the company’s website lists 13 locations in Arkansas, three in Missouri, and one in South Carolina, Kansas, and Texas.
“This will be the first 7 Brew drive-thru coffee location in Florida as they have a growth program now underway here in the state,” Chris Ossa, a civil engineer from Kimley-Horn, told Melbourne Planning and Zoning on Thursday. Board.
“It was a strategically identified location, due to its access to US 1,” Ossa said.
The Planning and Zoning Board unanimously approved a site plan for the café. Planning manager Cheryl Dean said departing customers will only be allowed to turn right onto US 1 northbound.
“They have a walk-in window, but it’s really more for the traveling public to run, wait in line, get their coffee and hit the road,” Dean told the board.
How many 7 Brew Coffee locations will there be in Brevard?
Gottlieb said he hopes Brevard County’s first two 7 Brew Coffee cafes will open this year: one in downtown Melbourne and one in Viera.
The latter is planned for the anchored Winn-Dixie plaza at the intersection of Murrell Road and Viera Boulevard. The store would be located between 7-Eleven and Tesla charging stations, said Shey Anderson, a JM Real Estate licensed sales agent.
Gottlieb said the coffee chain is planning eight or nine Brevard locations in total, including locations in North Cocoa and on Palm Bay Road.
7 Brew Coffee’s featured drinks during the month of May are French Vanilla Mocha, Pixie Stick Red Bull and Sweet & Salty Chai.
“We make delicious infused energy drinks, Italian sodas, smoothies, teas and more!” indicates the company’s website.
The rapid expansion of franchises is spreading across the country. 7 Brew Coffee opened its first South Carolina location in January in Greenville. A store manager told The Greenville News that the chain plans to eventually open 15 to 20 locations in the Greenville-Spartanburg area.
Up to 27 franchises are planned in the Kansas City metro area, the Kansas City Star reported in January.
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In February 2021, Melbourne City Council unanimously rejected a Georgia developer’s bid to rezone the ¾ acre grassy plot to allow the construction of a Mr. Clean car wash.
City council members cited the lot’s proximity to Associated Endodontists – where patients undergo delicate dental microsurgery. They also cited potential back-ups on Palmetto Avenue, especially in light of Wawa’s existing traffic.
On Thursday, Frank Schrader, member of the Planning and Zoning Board, expressed his concerns about the traffic generated by 7 Brew Coffee.
“Is the amount of traffic potentially going through (backup) this neighborhood, given the difficulties getting out on both US 1 and (US) 192 from this area?” Schrader asked.
According to information provided by the developer, the cafe would generate approximately 358 new vehicle trips per day, and “the vast majority of these trips will be transit trips on US 1,” a diary note reads. Mr. Clean Car Wash is estimated to generate approximately 380 daily trips via access from US 1, according to a February 2021 diary note.
Now vacant, the ¾-acre grassy lot was first developed in 1920 with a single-family home, according to a town hall memo. The housing was replaced with a gas
station in the early 1940s, and a motel was added to the site in the late 1950s.
This gas station was demolished in 1959 and later replaced by an office and a house. All structures were then razed.
Downtown Melbourne Wawa at US 1 and Strawbridge Avenue opened in August 2018.