The only genuine fast-food outlet in Ocean Beach is the Jack-in-the-Box at the corner of Voltaire Street and Sunset Cliffs Boulevard, a garish orange structure erected in 1956, a time when leering fifty-foot-tall clown heads greeted the chain’s patrons. Since then, OB residents have developed an antipathy to quick eateries; the community actively began discouraging fast-food purveyors, and last year blocked Winchell’s Donuts from acquiring a foothold. Now, however, the community distaste for fast food isn’t daunting executives of the Foodmaker Corporation from planning to expand dramatically their lonely outlet in the beach neighborhood.
To date, those plans call for increasing the facility from about 1000 to about 2400 square feet, extending it in three directions, and expanding the number of seats from twenty-four to sixty. Foodmaker also wants to spruce up the enlarged exterior with wooden siding and more glass. Company officials are quiet about their plans for the towering old-style sign, one of the facets of the expansion likely to draw critical comment, along with the outlet’s drive-through character and its parking accommodations. Those and other such questions should surface tomorrow at the coastal commission, where the Foodmaker project is scheduled for a hearing.