OCEANSIDE — MainStreet Oceanside members gave a thumbs up to an ordinance to allow craft breweries without restaurants in Oceanside’s downtown.
A city presentation on proposed regulations was given at the April MainStreet Morning Meeting. It mirrored information shared at a community workshop in February.
MainStreet Oceanside Executive Director Rick Wright said there has been business interest in opening craft breweries that do not sell food in the downtown area for several years.
“Downtown residents and businesses, they welcomed this,” Wright said.
Wright said MainStreet supports an ordinance to allow artisan manufacturing businesses downtown, which must currently operate in an industrial zone.
Wright said it’s time to think outside of the box on what businesses should be allowed.
Oceanside is in the process of adding 50,000 square feet of retail space and business parking downtown. Two blocks of the nine-block master plan are actively under construction.
Some South Oceanside residents are not as warm to the idea of allowing craft breweries along Coast Highway 101.
Wright said pushback is coming from the success and patron traffic of a new gastropub restaurant in South Oceanside, which is not governed by the proposed ordinance.
Residents have spoken about traffic and parking impacts of the gastropub during the November workshop and at city council meetings, and said craft breweries may cause similar impacts.
Discussions of business impacts have moved the city to consider adding residential notification of permitted by right breweries, which would not go through a public review process. The extra step would alert adjacent residents to planned breweries under 5,000 square feet that output less than 6,000 barrels of beer.
All businesses go through a city review process. Those selling alcohol must also obtain an Alcohol Beverage Control license.
Breweries larger than 5,000 square feet that output more than 6,000 barrels of beer would go through a public review process under the proposed ordinance.
The city is collecting online input on the craft brewery ordinance through April 15. A city website survey asks questions that range from whether people support craft breweries, to what could their potential impacts could be. Russ Cunningham, city principal planner, said 350 survey responses have been received so far.
City staff also reached out and informed Oceanside Chamber of Commerce, North Coastal Prevention Coalition, neighborhood groups and the San Diego Brewers Guild on the proposed ordinance.
A summary of community input and online feedback will be shared with the Downtown Advisory Committee, Planning Committee and the City Council this summer.