For years a building on North H Street has sat vacant, a monument to various restaurant concepts that never made it.
Crews are now gutting the inside and remodeling for what will eventually be a new California Department of Motor Vehicles "Drivers License Processing Center".
A DMV spokersperson tells Central Coast News the new facility will not replace the current Lompoc DMV office on West Pine Ave.
Rather it will process all original, first time drivers license applications including what's expected to be a surge in 2015 from undocumented local workers seeking a new, specially-designated CDL under California AB 60 that signed into law last year.
The new DMV facility sits between two popular motels on North H Street.
Managers at both properties declined to be interviewed on camera about the project but both said they were surprised to see the new DMV project opening next door.
"The State of California doesn't have to have a review", says Lompoc Mayor John Linn who says he was surprised as anyone about the new facility, "the State doesn't have to come to the City, they operate independently, the State does what they do just like the County does what they do, we find out about it when its done."
"There are positives and negatives to it, obviously some people are concerned about who the people are that will be coming to get their drivers license and they have a political position on that but it's state law now", Mayor Linn says, "we have a very, very long vacant building that's going to be re-done, the state has a lease on it, its not here forever, at some point it will be available to the community also and some jobs are being created that pay well."
The new facility is expected to open in the Fall and be open every weekday.