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Thread: Standards and Regs for Drive-Thru Coffee Kiosks

  1. #1
    Cyburbian zman's avatar
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    Standards and Regs for Drive-Thru Coffee Kiosks

    Recently my municipal planning department has been inundated with requests and proposals for drive-thru coffee kiosks to be placed in numerous parking lots throughout our fair city. Now, we do not have any regulations for these, other than putting them through a special review process, is there anything I should look for? Ask of the applicants? Any regs, standards, and/or suggestions anyone could share? (As Planner I, I have been dubbed the "Coffee Shack Guy" here and have been fielding all the publics inquiries) Anything would help Cyburbia!
    Thanks.
    You get all squeezed up inside/Like the days were carved in stone/You get all wired up inside/And it's bad to be alone

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  2. #2
    Cyburbian SGB's avatar
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    While I haven't dealt directrly with regulating coffee shacks, I frequent two on the drive to work and have seen another go in at the community I work in.

    Keep the following in mind: traffic, traffic, traffic!
    • These are high traffic volume businesses during the peak morning hours.
    • If there is inadequate stacking space in the parking lot where the shack is located, customers will stack on the adjacent road(s). The owner (of course) will deny this is going to happen.
    • If the subject community is in a northern community, make sure the snow removal plan allows for year round unobstructed access lanes to the shack.

    Do site visits at existing shacks during peak hours (6am - 9am) to see for yourself how much traffic these things attract, and what amount of on-site stacking is needed.

    Corner lots at signaled intersections can work well for these uses.
    All these years the people said he’s actin’ like a kid.
    He did not know he could not fly, so he did.
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  3. #3
    Cyburbian ludes98's avatar
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    I would say there needs to be at least 150' of stacking for the drive thru. It will still be inadequate most likely.

  4. #4
    Cyburbian mike gurnee's avatar
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    Make the lanes clearly marked. We lost a 6 year old two summers ago at a shaved ice place.

  5. #5
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    We require stacking for 6 cars from the place of first contact (ie the order board, not the pick-up window). However, we still have problems with Dunkin Donuts, which seems to have impossibly long lines in the morning. In fact, the City Council now wants to amend the special permit for drive throughs to allow the city of shut the business down if cars consistantly overflow onto a public way.

  6. #6
    Cyburbian imaplanner's avatar
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    Another good idea is to prohibit them from making specialty drinks during peak traffic hours. Imagine everyone wanting a double chocolate mocha with coconut cream pudding on top. It would back traffic up for miles.

  7. #7
    Cyburbian zman's avatar
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    Thanks every said in here helps, any other ideas are welcome
    You get all squeezed up inside/Like the days were carved in stone/You get all wired up inside/And it's bad to be alone

    You can go out, you can take a ride/And when you get out on your own/You get all smoothed out inside/And it's good to be alone
    -Peart

  8. #8
    Forums Administrator & Gallery Moderator NHPlanner's avatar
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    We've required a minimum of 15 stacking spaces at the two most recent DD drive-thru's. Neither one is open yet, so I'm still awaiting the results of the stacking requirements.
    "Growth is inevitable and desirable, but destruction of community character is not. The question is not whether your part of the world is going to change. The question is how." -- Edward T. McMahon, The Conservation Fund

  9. #9
    Cyburbian donk's avatar
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    All I have to say is that if all they serve is coffee and donuts you are probably fine with existing standards. As soon as the business model changes to include bagels and sandwiches the lines become insane. here are some pics to show what I mean.







    And this place met our standards. I take this as one of my big mistakes when we did the rezoning, we should have tagged them with 20 spaces on site (9 provided), it still would not have made a difference, but might have helped a bit.

    If it is possible you might be able to limit their hours of operation or access to reduce congestion at peak times. We ended up having the police ticket people for "stopping" and illegal parking. Works for a couple of weeks, but has to be repeated often.
    Too lazy to beat myself up for being to lazy to beat myself up for being too lazy to... well you get the point....

  10. #10
    Cyburbian boiker's avatar
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    Bumped because the issue is hitting here now.

    Apparently, these little kiosks don't hook up to water/sewer and have clean water trucked in daily and "sewage" trucked out daily. They don't need bathrooms (in Illinois) if they are within 300 ft of a structure with a bathroom. (poor employees). They are set up with dual drive-thrus, one on either side. Unfortunately here, they won't be required to do any landscaping (maybe A tree) or traffic control other than striping.

    Currently, they are all handled as special uses here, and the developers are crying foul that the big old city is being mean with its antiquated rules and doesn't want to change to provide its citizens the black goodness that flows from drive thru coffee baristas.

    Anyone have any other special conditions or impacts that should be considered with each approval?
    Dude, I'm cheesing so hard right now.

  11. #11
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    I have a couple thoughts on how you might approach this. The first would be to make drive-through windows a conditional use, if you have not already done so. In addition to giving you a little more control over the situation, it would allow you to require a review after six months or year, to determine if the conditional use should be kept. The second suggestion is that in addition to the stacking lanes, you should have designated stalls for cars to pull into while they wait for their coffee if there are long lines. Culvers does this at all their restaurants. Workers then bring the food out to the car.
    Anyone want to adopt a dog?

  12. #12
    Cyburbian Wisconsinplanner's avatar
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    I agree with Cardinal. High traffic developments should require a conditional use permit with the ability to monitor problems and then have the ability to correct problems. These type of developments have the ability to cause major traffic problems, especially if they have direct acess off of a major street.

    Any development with drive-thru lanes in my city requires a conditional use permit with standards on setback of the entrance to the drive-thru from a public steet , stacking space and width of drive-thru lanes, along with several other requirements. Our standards may not be strict enough, but I've included a link to our standards if you'd like some information. The link is to the entire chapter...scroll down to page 21, number 15 on the bottom of the page.

    http://www.kenosha.org/departments/n...ning/chpt4.pdf

    If your city or company has a membership in PAS through APA, I'd also contact them for some information.

    Good luck!

  13. #13
    Cyburbian Breed's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Wisconsinplanner
    If your city or company has a membership in PAS through APA, I'd also contact them for some information.
    What he said. I used PAS for our big box ordinance. Words cannot express how valuable a service this was.
    Every time I look at a Yankees hat I see a swastika tilted just a little off kilter.
    Bill "Spaceman" Lee

  14. #14
    Cyburbian munibulldog's avatar
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    Apparently we do not have good stacking language, but some of the requirements in this special use permit are pretty good, for example, a requirement to have parking spaces beyond the drive through window so people can get ready before driving away. Also the pedestrian window requirement is good, recognizing that there may be pedestrian or bike traffic. There is also a requirement for a bypass lane around the stacking area, it may be in another section, or it might have gotten canned in an amendment, but I remember trying to get it in there.

    SECTION 1510.10. DRIVE-IN ESTABLISHMENTS

    1. Locational Requirements - Drive-in establishments and carry-out food establishments are permitted by Special Use Permit in the B-2, General Business and B-4 Major Business Thoroughfare Districts.

    2. Site Requirements
    a. Minimum lot area shall be twenty thousand (20,000) square feet.
    b. The minimum lot width shall be one hundred twenty (120) feet.
    c. The site shall have at least one (1) lot line on a paved major thoroughfare.
    3. Buffering Requirements
    a. Shall meet the requirements of Section 1709 (Landscaping).
    b. The outdoor storage of trash and rubbish shall be screened in accordance with Section 1709 of this Ordinance.
    4. Performance Standards
    a. The outdoor space used for parking and vehicle stacking, shall be hard surfaced and adequately drained.
    b. An adequate number of outdoor trash receptacles shall be provided in convenient locations at drive-in and carry-out food establishments. Drive-in restaurant management shall provide adequate trash and litter policing for the parking lot and the shoulders of adjacent roadways. These areas shall be completely cleared of accumulated debris as often as necessary to keep them free of litter.
    c. No drive shall be closer to any other drive than (twenty-five) 25 feet and the maximum number of driveways permitted on a major thoroughfare is two (2).
    d. Vehicular circulation patterns into and out of such businesses shall be located and designed to minimize disruption of and conflicts with through traffic movement on abutting streets.
    e. Devices for the transmission or broadcasting of voices or music shall be so directed or muffled as to prevent said sound or music from being audible beyond the boundaries of the site.
    f. Bathroom facilities shall be provided at food establishments for use by patrons even if no indoor seating is provided.
    g. A pedestrian walk-up window for ordering and an adequate number of tables to sit at shall be provided if there is no inside seating.
    h. There shall be convenient parking for patrons equal to the number of spaces for employees if there is no indoor seating.
    I. There shall be at least two (2) temporary vehicle stopping spaces after the delivery window so motorists may prepare themselves for a safe exit onto the public roadway.

  15. #15
    Cyburbian boiker's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by munibulldog
    2. Site Requirements
    a. Minimum lot area shall be twenty thousand (20,000) square feet.
    b. The minimum lot width shall be one hundred twenty (120) feet.
    The minimum lot size and width is enormous for the size of one of these "shacks". It seems that is big-time land over-consumption.
    Dude, I'm cheesing so hard right now.

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