Downtown Erie Starbucks location closes its doors

Local News

A national chain and Erie downtown business is closing its doors. Representatives from Starbucks announcing that they would close many of their locations that do not include a drive-thru.

The Starbucks location in the 500 block of State Street is now permanently closed. The closure comes as local corporations and millions of federal dollars are being invested in the downtown Erie area. Recent downtown investments include the Flagship City Food Hall, which opened in late-November 2021.

“This shows the difference between local businesses, local investors, and big national companies. The big, national companies are not here, they’re not downtown, they’re not on the streets here, they don’t see the construction and they don’t see the investment that’s going on.” said John Persinger, CEO of the Erie Downtown Development Corporation.

In recent years, a local coffee shop called Ember and Forge opened. Andora’s Bubble Tea shop opened in 2020. The manager at Andora’s says business has picked up in the past few weeks.

“We kind of see it as an opportunity, a big chain has closed and we’re a small business. We’ve been getting a lot more coffee sales and specialty drink sales, so it really helped us. A little unfortunate for Starbucks, though,” said Lindsey Pierce, Manager of Andora’s Bubble Tea Shop.

Several downtown customers say while it is unfortunate that Starbucks is closing, it gives them the opportunity to support other local businesses.

“It is cool that local businesses are getting the chance to get more business now. I’m not sure if they’re closed permanently, but I don’t think it would be the end of the world if they were.” said Talia Coccarelli, Downtown Erie Customer.

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The Erie Downtown Development Corporation will also soon open their new “Flagship Public Market” next to the food hall.

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