CVS Pharmacy Begins Rehab of Old Apple Tree Market in Ocean Beach

by on May 23, 2014 · 35 comments

in Economy, Environment, Ocean Beach

Yes, it’s finally happened.  CVS Pharmacy has begun the work of rehabbing the former Apple Tree Market in OB.

On a visit at the site on Thursday, May 22nd, I witnessed plenty of activity that displays the development.  An on-site contractor also confirmed that CVS is really beginning the process of moving in.

Workers inside were finalizing the dusty and dirty job of gutting the interior of the Fifties-style cavernous building – once the site of a Safeway.  The wood will be saved I was told – and I could see wonderful reddened wood composing the ceiling beams.

OB cvs 5-22-14 loadocThe plans are to do a complete remodel of the interior. It would be easy speculation to say that the remodel will look very similar to other CVS Pharmacies.

CVS also has plans to redo the rooftop.  The old loading dock has already been demolished with the idea of replacing it with a smaller one. The interior freight elevator will also be replaced, I was told.

And of course the front of  the building will be repainted.

When will it open?  Maybe in October.  That sounds awfully early, but they’re obviously working on it.

{ 35 comments… read them below or add one }

Ron K. May 23, 2014 at 11:43 am

Rite-Aid will have some competition now.


Another Anonymous Neighbor May 23, 2014 at 11:46 am

I would so much rather have seen a locally owned business in this space.


objamie May 23, 2014 at 11:52 am

Personally doubt I will shop there and I might even boycott that sumb#$# that has no business being in OB. They will a Starbucks anyway and keep a losing store open.


JinOB May 23, 2014 at 1:03 pm

This is terrible! We don’t need another over-priced drug store full of mass produced, processed foods and energy drinks. We need a grocery store! But the greed of the landlords saw to the end of that. OB is dying a slow death, and this is part of it.


Marc Snelling May 24, 2014 at 9:33 am

I agree with JinOB. When an out of town landlord makes up their mind before the process even starts its hard to fault people for not being involved in the planning process. There were 500 people who went to the OBTC meeting concerning Starbucks, years ago. It still went in simply because the property owner wanted it and refused local businesses. Great the OBTC got some participation from the lessees. Still, not sure if CVS are motivated by community involvement or getting a leg up on RiteAid. Time will tell.


Another Anonymous Neighbor May 24, 2014 at 10:20 am

The silver lining is that selection will go up and prices will go down at both places.


Gretchen Newsom May 23, 2014 at 2:44 pm

While it is unfortunate that the property owner was not successful in leasing the Apple Tree lot to another grocer (as desired and advocated by the community and OB leaders), the Ocean Beach Town Council successfully negotiated a Community Benefits Package with CVS.

It is the expectation of the Ocean Beach Town Council that CVS will fully implement all declarations and initiatives contained in the CVS Community Benefits Package for the full duration of their lease.



Suzy Reid May 24, 2014 at 12:07 pm

I’m glad the OB Town Council weighed in on this and held discussions at their meetings to ensure members of the community were heard. I agree with other commenters that the landlord had the ultimate say, and there wasn’t much we as a community could do, other than was was done and negotiated on in the Community Benefits Plan. Kudos to Gretchen and the OBTC and community members who voiced their concerns and demands. This is how we retain our community.


Hippie May 23, 2014 at 4:00 pm

I agree with JinOB. Each corporate giant that settles in OB chips away at the funky culture of this very special town. I will not shop there, nor will I patronize Jack or Starbucks. I would like to see everyone do the same. We vote with our dollars. Let’s not make it profitable for these giants to come to OB and instead support locally owned businesses.


OB Mercy May 23, 2014 at 4:14 pm

Every time the Rag publishes a story about CVS going in, you guys come out of the woodwork crying foul. Where were you all when you could have spoken out at all the public planning meetings the Rag always published dates of?? Geesh, protest when you can make a difference. Too late for this issue.


DonCharly May 25, 2014 at 1:38 am

Well Said !


Dave Rice May 23, 2014 at 5:41 pm

I’d really like to see them keep the iconic ’50s-style roofline that graced so many bygone supermarkets…go ahead and revamp the floor below to make it modern generic, I guess. I assume the produce mural on the wall facing Santa Monica is gone or on the way out?

I think we all would have rather seen a grocery store go in, but it’s what the landlords wanted – if the former owner couldn’t get a lease term even though he allegedly wanted one, who’s to say the LA-based owners would have allowed another grocery in.

Also, any update on that owner, who I believe I read here owns the old B of A building and had made some rumblings about opening a market there?


Gretchen Kinney Newsom May 23, 2014 at 6:19 pm

While it is unfortunate that the property owner was not successful in leasing the Apple Tree lot to another grocer (as desired and advocated by the community and OB leaders), the Ocean Beach Town Council successfully negotiated a Community Benefits Package with CVS.

It is the expectation of the Ocean Beach Town Council that CVS will fully implement all declarations and initiatives contained in the CVS Community Benefits Package for the full duration of their lease.

Details on the Community Benefits Package:


hoodie May 23, 2014 at 7:32 pm

This is legally binding and the courts will ensure CVS honors the contract?


objamie May 30, 2014 at 3:02 pm

LOL Yeah will

My opinion is non-legally binding…and CVS is really only responsible to one group- shareholders.


tesee May 24, 2014 at 9:25 am

This is nice to know, thanks for the link!


Tom Cairns May 23, 2014 at 9:05 pm

I remember a friend who worked at the Safeway–Doug-who brought the egg carton things to his house to make a sound-dead music room. Putting them all over the walls, like a radio station. I think he lived on Coronado at the time, right?


A.K. Skurgis May 23, 2014 at 10:03 pm

I think OB needs a grocery store FAR more than a CVS!


RB May 24, 2014 at 11:42 am

In a few years, one of the drug stores will win and the other will lose. IMO, OB cannot support two similar stores. The building renovation and removal of this current horrible unused site is a long term positive for the community, so enjoy the positive change for the property whether or not you shop at the business.


Frank Gormlie May 24, 2014 at 9:49 pm

There is this weird trend going on among pharmacies that many have noticed; they move in next to each other. Where I live there are 3 pharmacies across from each other at a 4 way light: Walgreens, Rite Aide and CVS.


ObJamie May 25, 2014 at 1:56 pm

It’s just the Florida-zation (trademarked) of the rest of the nation
4x Pill Pushers on Every Corner
Baby Boomer is comin for ya
More old people the world ever seen
Give them all the -zines, -zines,-zines!

You are welcome for an answer to what I hope was a question you already possessed an answer to inside.


Another Anonymous Neighbor May 25, 2014 at 2:04 pm

Which collective did you get that stuff from?


objamie May 27, 2014 at 11:07 am

I don’t support the sham mmj organizations…

Does your lack of rebut mean you agree?


Another Anonymous Neighbor May 27, 2014 at 11:25 am

They are not a “sham”. You’ve been listening to big pharma’s and big alcohol’s propaganda, along with the lobbying of the prison corporations.


objamie May 27, 2014 at 12:21 pm

You know nothing about me or what I listen to.

But you did do a good job of deflecting an answer to my post! Congrats.


Another Anonymous Neighbor May 27, 2014 at 12:40 pm

Your own reference to legitimate medical marijuana treatment centers as “sham mmj organizations” tells me all about you. You should move, you’d probably be happier in Lakeside…or Phoenix.


Katydid52 May 27, 2014 at 6:37 pm

Hey, it’s legal in AZ, and we’re glad it is! And we don’t want him!


ObJamie May 27, 2014 at 10:52 pm

Another Assumptive Neighbor should maybe be your handle?

But at least you dodged my post’s question twice now, kudos. Shoot for three?

Reflects poorly on you to attack the poster, not the post, fyi.

And Katy…him?

I don’t recall ever feeling a desire to move to that particular shit-hole.


Katydid52 May 28, 2014 at 7:26 am

So sorry. I only know a guy Jamie. I stand corrected.


Another Anonymous Neighbor May 28, 2014 at 7:59 am

Then let’s go back to the post. It was an incoherent rant of some sort. It does not contain any obvious question requiring an answer, nor even a clear statement, except vague allusions concerning seniors.

Because it was incoherent, I decided some humor was appropriate. Your response made it clear that you are an opponent of medical marijuana, a political position that I assert is fascist, thus changing the nature of the exchange. I therefore recommended that you might be more comfortable in a Republican-dominated area where fascism is considered acceptable.


objamie May 30, 2014 at 3:12 pm

As yes, use lots of words, some of them big and scary. Once again, you are all assumption, not fact.

My original post, they you only chose to respond after being called out repeatedly for, was a satirical poem about Big Pharma, Senior Citizens, drugs and drug addiction, and the massive, upcoming senior citizen population boom and the catering of said group “pharmaceutically”. Duh.

And most mmj clinics are NOT about compassion, they are about $$, but that is a topic for another thread not this one.

Did you really need me to explain it further?


Another Anonymous Neighbor May 30, 2014 at 3:29 pm

Sorry if I sent you running to the dictionary.

Yes, I’m aware that our increasing age is leading many of us to spend more of our money in drugstores on products from pharmaceutical companies, medical device manufacturers, and clever products made in China to overcome our age-related disabilities.

Collectives are not permitted to make a profit. Operating a high security retail establishment that markets a labor intensive product is expensive, try comparing it to a jewelry store.


Tyler May 27, 2014 at 12:57 pm

Any details on whether or not the old Apple Tree owner will be doing work on the old BofA/Surf & Skate? Didn’t he say he’d be opening up a grocery store once the lease for the old Apple Tree was taken care of and it was guaranteed it wasn’t another grocer? I inquired 8 months ago about the property and was interested in opening one up myself but was ignored by the broker and the OBMA.

Also – anyone notice that Oscar’s closed? That owner sure put his foot in his mouth about trying to be a part of OB for a long time.


sdwahine May 30, 2014 at 5:26 pm

Finally, someone is asking the important outstanding questions here. Thank you Tyler. Are we going to have a grocery store or not? This was a completely walkable community with Apple Tree here. Opening a CVS is just stupid greed by the owner (and CVS), but what we need to know now is whether our lack of a grocery store issue will be otherwise resolved. Unfortunately, Olive Tree and People’s just aren’t quite enough, although I love both.


ken keegan July 28, 2014 at 1:51 am

Hi. I was recently in O.B. to check on the mural and to find out news. I spoke to Spenser (who was managing the interior clean up) who said they expected to open in November. I also have the name of the project manager. His name is Carlos A Crespo of the Hearne Corporation. Although I have yet to make contact with him (left a phone message) Spenser said they were considering restoring and framing the mural. That is heresay, so no guarantees. I hope to be involved in this process. Meanwhile, I am sending the original sketches/plans for the mural to Denny Knox at the Ocean Beach Mainstreet Association… so if anyone is curious about the murals’ origins, contact her at their Bacon Street office. VIVA O.B.!


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