ATASCADERO — There was a hustle and bustle about downtown Atascadero early Friday morning as Z Villages Development Company began installing its new, forward-thinking project that is bringing a beer garden, among other things, to the heart of the City.

Construction began around 7 a.m. Friday, Dec. 18, when the first of the seven shipping containers made their way to the La Plaza site from the Crate Modular yard in Carson, where they were fabricated. Throughout the day, Atascadero’s downtown will resemble a large cargo seaport as cranes strapped with shipping containers will configure the puzzle that will turn into the Block Shops.

Z Villages expects the placement of all seven shipping containers to be completed in one day. As of 11 a.m., three of the shipping containers had been installed.

Shipping container getting moved into position. (Photo by Hayley Mattson)
Proposed rendering of the Block Shops.

The Block Shops will contain Ancient Owl Beer Garden and Bottle Shop, Negranti Creamery, and Stellar and Sun. The Beer Garden is being opened by two local brewers, Marcin Andruszkiewicz and Laurence Duterte, who spent time working with BarrelHouse Brewing Co. It will have anywhere from 20-25 taps with craft beers from California, the United States and the world.

The project began in 2019 when Z Villages came across Fieldwork Brewing Co. in Northern California, who used the shipping container concept and began working with their architect to bring the idea to downtown Atascadero.

The Block Shops are expected to open in March of 2021.

Getting through this together, Atascadero