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Poway OKs new shooting range

POWAY, Calif. – The Poway City Council approved plans for new shooting range Tuesday evening and there’s already talk of a second range.

gun rangePoway Range Partners received unanimous approval from city councilmembers to convert an empty commercial building located on the northwest corner of Gregg and Flint Place into a 17-lane range.

“That building has been empty for 2 years, I think a shooting range is just the right business,” said an employee from Network Printing, the business across the street from the empty building.

“The goal here is just understanding and educating people to be at ease when it comes to guns,” said John Phillips, owner of Poway Weapons and Gear.

In recent months, firearms at Phillip’s store have practically been flying off the shelves.

“Our shelves are virtually bare,” said Phillips.  “There’s a lot of people who want to protect themselves.”

Now Phillips wants a place where his customers can shoot and also has plans to build an indoor range.  His vision is an empty lot located at Danielson and Park Center Drive.  He eventually hopes to build a 42-lane facility.

“We’re going to have three separate ranges. There will be a 100 yard, 50 yard and 25 yard range,” he said.

The range would be a high tech law enforcement training center, but the general public would also be welcome.

“It’s one thing to have a gun shop. It’s another thing to have a place where people can really purchase something, but learn how to be safe with it,” said Phillips.

“This is a really residential area and I think you’re just opening yourself up for more problems,” said Poway resident Aggie Garcia. “I don’t think it’s really a good idea.”

Garcia shops at the Costco just several buildings away from the proposed shooting range. The Poway resident said it’s not just about guns, but also congestion, too.

“If you want to do a shooting range somewhere in the back country would be a better idea,” said Garcia.  “It’s too crowded here for a shooting range.”

Phillips said he understands concerns, but said it’s all about properly learning how to use a firearm.