Chevron garage to become mini mart

The Village is about to lose a garage and gain a mini mart.

La Jolla Chevron at the corner of Pearl Street and La Jolla Boulevard will begin the transformation when the repair shop closes Oct. 24.

“We’re going to be a big convenience store with high-end coffees and hot and cold specialty foods, lottery tickets, beer and wine,” said service station owner Chris Medeiros. “It’s going to be a brand new building, a remodel, with more things available for people who want convenience.”

Medeiros said the remodel won’t involve increasing the square footage of the building at 7475 La Jolla Blvd., but gutting it and making it over, keeping the back walls intact.

“We will close for approximately five or six days when we start the remodel,” he said. “But we’re going to put up a temporary kiosk and we will sell gas during the construction of the facility almost the whole time. The whole thing (remodel) should take about three or four months.”

Demolition of the existing building will start at the end of October.

When he purchased the service station’s corner lot from Chevron in 2004, Medeiros said part of the deal was that he would phase out car repairs. He said it took four years at a considerable cost to go through the permit process required to alter his business.

Medeiros has mixed feelings about the change.

“In one way I’m sad to see the repair shop go, but I think it’s going to be better for the community.”

Chevron employee Justin King will continue to be available to do mobile repairs in a new business named Justin Time, and Eric Gomez Villeda will be transferring to Colonial Garage on Herschel Avenue.

The new Chevron site will be named The Extra Mile. Medeiros said there are Chevrons in Seattle and a few in San Diego that have made the transformation from repair shops to mini marts.

“Chevron’s been pretty successful with them,” he said.

Medeiros is looking ahead.

“I’m hoping we’re as successful as the projections project,” he said. “It’s going to be nice. It should be an attractive building.”

Call Justin Time at (858) 945-8330.