More residents than ever are flocking to the Turlock Town Center for their shopping and dining needs thanks to its revitalization in recent years, and additional changes are on the way as some well-known businesses prepare to move into the growing retail hub.
Although the grand opening of the center’s new anchor tenant, Smart & Final Extra! last summer seemingly marked the completion of a years-long effort to breathe new life into the shopping space, a restaurant shakeup is set to take place in the coming months as Mundo’s Latin Grill moves locations and others set up shop in the center as well.
Demolition began this week on the former Mundo’s Latin Grill building, which first opened in 2005. Owners Veronica and Gerardo Gonzales bought the restaurant in 2012 and have since shared countless memories with the Turlock community in the space, which was torn down to make room for the city’s second Dutch Bros. Coffee shop.
Watching their restaurant’s beloved building come down was an emotional experience, Veronica Gonzales said, but the family was able to watch the process from the front of their new Mundo’s location right across the center’s parking lot.
“This was where we had our first opportunity to go into the restaurant business and even though it wasn’t necessarily the perfect location, we made the best out of it. I know people loved the patio,” she said. “There were definitely mixed emotions, but when we’re able to now be sitting in a new place with our own ideas and concepts, it made sense. We look at every situation in the most positive way and in this case, we’re coming back bigger and stronger.”
The Gonzales family hopes the new, larger Mundo’s location will be open by July, Veronica said, and they won’t be the only Mexican restaurant to call the Turlock Town Center home. According to a report by Assistant to the City Manager for Housing and Economic Development Maryn Pitt, El Rosal will soon return to their original location in the center near Mister Car Wash, while Pho 7 Anh will move from that space into another vacant spot closer to the Goodwill store.
El Rosal sold their location on West Monte Vista Avenue last year, and the space will soon be a new cannabis dispensary. Another familiar Turlock business, Green Grub, is set to open in the Turlock Town Center as well, moving from their original location near Raley’s on Geer Road.
“It’s an exciting time to be a business owner in the center,” Veronica Gonzales said, which also welcomed eateries like Jura’s Pizza Parlor and Popeyes Louisiana Chicken in recent years, as well as salons and other businesses.
The new Dutch Bros. Coffee is sure to draw even more traffic to the area, and work on the new Starbucks across the street from the center is about 70% complete.
According to Pitt’s report, Turlock Town Center owners stated that the shopping destination is now at 95% occupancy, compared to just 45% occupancy in 2017.
“I think it’s super exciting because Turlock needed to refocus a little bit of the traffic to this side of town,” Veronica Gonzales said. “My husband and I are super excited to be part of the growth in the Turlock Town Center.”