Courtesy of City of Durango
Zia Taqueria expects to start building a new location on north Main Avenue this summer.
The building, which will fill a vacant lot at 30th Street and Main Avenue, will replace the restaurant’s location a block away on 31st Street and will have more parking and seating, owner Tim Turner said.
The 5,500-square-foot building was designed with the architecture of San Miguel de Allende, a colonial-era city in Mexico, in mind, said architect Elizabeth Boone, with Reynolds Ash and Associates.
The building will have small windows and exposed wood beams, reminiscent of colonial Mexico. But it will also have some modern elements, such as an aluminum store front, she told the city’s Design Review Board on Wednesday.
“We are trying to keep the image of this building true to our identity,” Turner said.
The board unanimously approved the two-story building’s design.
“I think it’s fantastic. I think it’s so much fun,” board member Lauren Jackson said.
The second floor will have a deck with seasonal seating covered by retractable shades, that the Durango Planning Commission must approve, Planner Scott Shine said. The Durango City Council does not need to vote on the project.
Turner has owned the property for about four years, and if city approvals go smoothly, he would like to break ground on the project in August.
The new building will allow Turner to expand the restaurant’s menu and open a full bar, he said.
Board members said they expect the restaurant’s move to ease parking congestion near the intersection of 31st Street and Main Avenue. Zia Taqueria shares a parking area with 81301 Coffee House and Roasters, The Yellow Carrot and Dunn Deal Resale Store, and streets around the shopping center can get crowded.
The restaurant’s parking lot will be behind the new building and have 17 parking spaces, not counting new alley parking and head-in parking spaces on 30th Street beside the building that patrons and others can use.
Facing the parking lot, a mural is planned on an enclosed stairwell. Renderings show a rooster, described as a placeholder during the meeting, but board members encouraged Turner to keep it.