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Want a Castro Chipotle? You'll Have to Ask For It [UPDATE]

A few readers have written in to the tipline to ask when, exactly, Chipotle will open its tenth San Francisco location, which had been tentatively planned for the former Home space at the intersection of Church and Market, across from the Castro Safeway. We contacted the burrito gurus to find out, and learned that even big chains can sometimes have trouble powering through the vagaries of SF restaurant law. "We are still hoping to open a restaurant in the Castro, but it's too soon to have any kind of timeline," said a representative for the company. "Right now, we are working our way through the process to try to secure a conditional-use permit for that space." As Grub Street noted last year, the Castro has long banned fast food and formula retail, though it could be argued that Chipotle's sustainable fare disqualifies it from the fast-food category, as well as that the location isn't quite in the Castro proper, considering that there's a Jamba Juice and a GNC right around the corner in the Safeway shopping center. (It's also not the space's first rodeo: before it was Home, it was a Boston Market.)

For those interested in championing Chipotle, the rep also sent us a link to an online petition supporting the expansion. "This property has been vacant for over a year and has become an eyesore in our community," it reads. "Chipotle plans to do a complete façade remodel, including the addition of an outdoor patio. The design, which includes a public art component, would be unique to our neighborhood and created with input from the community." If you'd like to see Chipotle make its debut in the Castro, head over there to sign it, and/or e-mail the company here to voice your support. (Or, as is more likely the case given our environs, your virulent opposition.)

Update, March 21, 8:10 am: There was previously no opposition petition to the Chipotle move, so one of our readers made one; go here to sign it. If you're against Chipotle moving in, the Planning Commission would also be a good place to make your voice heard.

· Chipotle Targets Home Space on Market [~ ESF ~]
· All Chipotle coverage [~ ESF ~]

Chipotle Mexican Grill

2100 Market St., San Francisco, CA