Chipotle 'Burritofication' Across from EC Plaza

Construction workers and a "Burritofication in Progress" banner show that an opening is approaching for the new Chipotle grill in the old Payless ShoeSource building at Carlson Boulevard and San Pablo Avenue across from El Cerrito Plaza.

Anyone standing at the main entrance of El Cerrito Plaze and looking across San Pablo Avenue can see a new Chipotle restaurant being born.

A banner saying "Burritofication in Progress" and carrying the Chipotle Mexican Grill logo is attached to the front of the building. A large dumpster and construction debris sit in the parking lot while workers busy themselves with the conversion of the former home of Payless ShoeSource.

The Colorado-based Chipotle chain won approval of a use permit from the El Cerrito Planning Commission in April to open an outlet at 9901 San Pablo, at the intersection with Carlson Boulevard. 

The company boasts more than 900 outlets established since it began in 1993 and says says it uses meat from animals raised without antibiotics or synthetic hormones whenever possible and that its produce is from local sources when practical. 

The nearest Chipotle is located at San Pablo Avenue and Gilman Street in Berkeley.

The 2,845-square-foot building that will become Chipotle's El Cerrito outlet was originally a MacFarlanes Candy Store when it got its first tenant in 1960, according to a city staff report presented to the Planning Commission.

The space opened up this year because the lease for Payless ShoeSource was not renewed, according to Sean Moss, a senior planner with the city.

A large crowd turned up for a soft opening of a new Chipotle in Malibu on Oct. 23.


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Giorgio C. November 11, 2012 at 03:14 PM
"In January 2011, following an audit by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Chipotle dismissed some 450 of its Minnesota employees who lacked valid employment eligibility documents. That ICE probe later expanded to 60 of the company’s restaurants in Virginia and Washington, where additional Chipotle workers were dismissed." http://www.bizjournals.com/denver/news/2012/05/22/chipotle-under-criminal-scrutiny-for.html Was Chipotle helping these undocumented workers or did the Chipotle management decide it was good for business to hire those who are easy to take advantage of? Did the El Cerrito Planning Commission and City Council seek the answers to these questions? I will not be complicit in taking advantage of any group of people. I will continue to enjoy my favorites, Rubios and Gordos.
Eric Bordax November 11, 2012 at 04:59 PM
Anon November 11, 2012 at 05:16 PM
Wooo so excited! Don't have to go all the way to Berkeley.
John Stashik November 11, 2012 at 11:07 PM
Great. More fast food.
05121998 November 13, 2012 at 10:21 PM
I'll continue to patronize our local Asian/Mexican fusion restaurant, Best Burritos, on San Pablo and Stockton. Fresh, local, inventive. Try the Three Mushroom Burrito, or have a Spicy Chicken Taco Salad.


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