Starbucks Coming to the Downtown Plano Arts District

Starbucks will be making its way to historic Downtown Plano this November. Plano business owner Nathan Shea and son-in-law Hunter Holt are partnering together to operate and manage this location, ensuring local ownership through Eastside Coffee Operators, LLC (ECO). ECO is an approved licensee by Starbucks to operate and manage Starbucks locations. 

Nathan and Hunter have made plans for this Starbucks to be located inside the original Plano Ice House building, built prior to the 1950s and incorporated into the design of the four-story Urban Oil & Gas building. Urban Rio currently occupies the first and second floors, and Rooftop Event Spot occupies the fourth floor, all of which were started by the Shea family. The guys plan to integrate the look and feel of the historic ice house into the coffee shop.

Starbucks being built inside the original Plano Ice House // photos Jennifer Shertzer
Starbucks being built inside the original Plano Ice House // photos Jennifer Shertzer

The Downtown Plano Starbucks will offer the full coffee and espresso menu customers know and love, including fresh food options and nitro on tap.  

“We are very excited to be a part of bringing a globally recognized brand, such as Starbucks, to the Downtown Plano community,” said Hunter. He and Nathan believe that the coffee shop will not only increase the amount of visitors coming to the downtown area but also benefit many of the area’s restaurants and business owners because of the widely recognized brand that Starbucks conveys. 

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5 Comments

  • I absolutely agree with D Gilbert ! There are 2 independent coffee shops downtown. Because of the sheeple mindset hear in Plano they will be hurt ! Now a Starbucks ?? Shame ! And not a decent restaurant !!
    I thought downtown was supposed to be an ART center……There is nothing that follows along those lines with Starbucks, the McDonalds of coffee !

    • Downtown Plano has only been an “Arts district” for the last 2 years. They made that up to be more like Bishop Arts. It’s a joke. A half ass “art gallery” and some no name statues don’t make it artsy. I’m glad that there is going to be something that people would actually seek out. That area needs a facelift for sure. Nothing but one decent restaurant and a bunch of crappy boutiques that close at 4:00pm. No reason to go down there unless you’re drinking, or living in one of the corporate owned apartments. Why don’t you go after them? If you spent more time in the area, you would know.

    • Wow. Such positivity. That was sarcasm, by the way.

      The real economics of this is not always what we initially think. Speak to local coffeehouse owners and many of them (although not all, of course) will tell you that a Starbucks opening in their neighborhood has actually had a positive impact on their business. The common misconception is that Starbucks puts these local shops out of business – but it does not. New Starbucks stores create buzz and draws more people to the neighborhood. Could it have a negative effect on one or both of the existing business in downtown? Sure. But assuming that is foolish. About 58-60% of coffeeshops in the U.S. are still indie coffee shops, and Starbucks is literally opening multiple stores per day.

      As for the sheeple mindset, the restaurant trend in Plano suggests otherwise. The mainstream chain-style restaurants in this community has been on a consistent downward spiral over the past 10-12 years, while locally owned, and smaller regional chain growth has done nothing short of skyrocket. Plano is a highly educated and diverse city. I imagine many of its residents would take exception to you suggesting that they have a sheeple mindset.

      I also fail to see how a Starbucks presence somehow discredits the area’s designation as an arts district. Starbucks has a huge global art program that works with local artists and store design teams. They specifically look for emerging artists that add to the atmosphere they are trying to achieve in their stores.

  • I’m not avidly anti-Starbucks but kinda sad the chain is coming to downtown when there are already 2 small coffeehouses there.

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