City adds new spaces

Posted Monday, Mar. 10, 2014  comments  Print Reprints
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When a new pizza eatery and a steak and seafood restaurant open in the downtown this summer, patrons could find lots of extra parking.

The city is planning to pave a half acre of land purchased on West Broad Street, between Walnut Street and North 1st Avenue, to add about 60 public parking spaces that will bolster the current, scattered supply parking in the downtown area.

“If we’re going to have businesses coming, especially restaurants, we’re going to have to have parking for them,” said Scott Welmaker, the city’s economic development director.

But it’s not just for the highly anticipated additions to downtown -- Mellow Mushroom pizza restaurant and Broad Street Bistro, it’s also to support downtown merchants and the several special events hosted in the historic core of the downtown each year, said Assistant City Manager Chris Burkett.

Burkett said the city couldn’t commit to a firm completion date or price tag because the lot hasn’t been designed yet and there are several variables, including landscaping and sidewalks, to consider.

“The thing is to get it finally designed and price it out,” he said. But he said that if the lot isn’t open by the time the two restaurant are, it should be soon afterward.

The Mellow Mushroom, under brisk construction in the southeast corner of Main and Broad streets, is projected to open “by July, maybe sooner,” Welmaker said. “They’re tearing it up over there.”

Broad Street Bistro will occupy the historic J.H. Wright House at 302 W. Broad St., which is undergoing major renovations.

“They’re shooting for mid- to late summer,” Welmaker said. “With a complete redo of an old house, there’s no telling what surprises could pop up.”

Downtown isn’t the only place where new retail action is stirring interest.

Welmaker was tight-lipped about two new prospective businesses planning to make Mansfield their home.

He did reveal that one is a national-chain restaurant, and the other is a grocery store, which would become the fourth grocery at the intersection of Debbie Lane and Matlock Road. Walmart Neighborhood Market, Kroger and Aldi groceries now occupy three corners.

Among the soon-to-open projects, a Rosa’s Cafe and Tortilla Factory, which has been under construction since last fall on the northeast corner of Matlock Road and East Broad Street, has a Now Hiring sign out front.

“Our goal is to try to open by the last part of March or first part of April,” said Gerald Borron, the company’s director of real estate.

Work on a new Urban Air Trampoline Park is running long but should be complete “probably in the next couple of months,” Welmaker said. Last August the company projected the 32,000-square-foot indoor trampoline park, next to Big Lots on Walnut Creek Drive, north of U.S. 287, would open by year’s end.

Several other businesses have recently opened:

•  Prime Grill & Sidebar, 2300 Matlock Road.

•  BFF Baker and Bistro, featuring French Vietnamese cuisine, in the Shoppes di Lucca, 1601 E. Debbie Lane.

• Poured, a wine bar in the Shoppes di Lucca.

•  Einstein Bros Bagels, a sandwich and treats shop, in the former Wienerschnitzel at 2016 U.S. 287, next to Starbucks.

•  New dueling barbecue joints, Big D Barbecue and Top Secret Barbecue, at 226 N. Walnut Creek Drive and 120 N. Walnut Creek Drive, respectively.

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