Baker, Ahles & Kaskovich

Will CVS replace Ojos Locos in downtown Fort Worth?

The owner of Ojos Locos Sports Cantina says it has no plans to move from its location at 515 Houston St.
The owner of Ojos Locos Sports Cantina says it has no plans to move from its location at 515 Houston St. DFW.com archives

A CVS pharmacy appears headed for a prime location in downtown Fort Worth at the corner of Fifth and Houston streets. Just one problem: Ojos Locos Sports Cantina, the current tenant, has no plans of moving.

Fossil Creek Land Partners, headed by managing partner Farukh Aslam, which owns the building at 515 Houston St., is listed on a permit filed by CVS’s architecture firm for a required state review of plans to build the drugstore. Construction, estimated at a little more than $1 million, is expected to begin March 1 and be completed by July, according to the filing.

But the owner of Ojos Locos, a chain of Latin-themed sports bars that features scantily clad waitresses and whose name translates to Crazy Eyes in Spanish, told us recently that the cantina has no immediate plans of moving.

“Over the past six years, the downtown Fort Worth location of Ojos Locos has been a great one for us,” Rich Hicks, CEO of Reach Restaurant Group, said in a statement. “We have no plans to leave at this time.”

Ojos Locos, which has eight Texas locations, opened in downtown Fort Worth in January 2011, right before the Super Bowl was played in Arlington.

“Our lease is effective through 2025,” Hicks said. “Until we hear from our landlord further, we will continue business as usual.”

Asked about the situation, Aslam said only: “They are in their space, and they have a lease.”

The state review filing was made by Hurst-based Genesis Design Group. The firm has designed 15 new stores for CVS and completed 15 conversions of Eckerd locations when the retailer acquired the drug store chain, according to its website.

The group on Jan. 5 also filed for a commercial remodeling permit with the city, but that hasn’t been issued, according to the city’s website.

Several postings on a local architecture forum started talk of CVS coming to downtown Fort Worth. Ojos Locos’ owner acknowledged the chatter, but reiterated: “Yes, we have heard the rumors, however, we have no plans to leave our downtown Fort Worth location at this time.”

Sandra Baker and Rick Press

Cold storage at DFW Airport

When it’s over 100 degrees this summer, flowers and fresh foods will still be chilling at Dallas/Fort Worth Airport.

On Tuesday, the airport announced plans to build a new cold chain storage facility that cargo handlers will be able to use to ship perishable items.

“This new facility will increase our handling capabilities and open new doors for all our cargo and logistics partners to ship high-value, temperature- and time-sensitive products through DFW,” said John Ackerman, DFW Airport’s executive vice president of global strategy and development.

The airport already handles more than 794,600 tons of air freight each year, often handling cargo from South America on its way to Asia. The new facility will allow for temperature-controlled warehousing of cargo such as flowers, fresh foods and pharmaceutical products.

American Airlines has two cold storage units at its cargo facility on the northeast portion of the airport, but this new facility will be operated by AirLogistix USA and available for use by all of the airport’s cargo and logistic partners.

Total cargo shipments at DFW were up 16.3 percent in December, with domestic shipping up 23 percent and international cargo up 7.7 percent, the airport’s vice president, Milton de la Paz, told the airport board Thursday. Fourteen freighter companies at DFW serve major cargo hubs around the world in addition to the passenger airlines, like American, that carry cargo on their flights.

Winery up for sale

LightCatcher Winery & Bistro, one of Tarrant County’s first wineries and tasting rooms, is on the market along with the 4-acre site and reception room in hills northwest of downtown Fort Worth.

The 15-year-old winery and tasting room will remain open while up for sale at an asking price of $1.1 million, according to the online real estate listing. The brand and equipment are for sale separately, owner Caris Turpen told our Bud Kennedy last week.

“We have now spent 25 years in the wine business and have accomplished major awards and recognitions for our wines and quality of food and service,” Turpen wrote in an online message.

“Now, this having already been our second career, we seek semi-retirement.” She will continue as a local writer and artist, she said.

LightCatcher opened in 2002 when Turpen, an artist and Emmy-winning cinematographer, decided to launch a winery on Farm Road 1886, then a hilly backroad west of Lakeside off the Jacksboro Highway.

LightCatcher continues with its regular schedule of weekend dinners, wine tastings and music, including Jazz Sundays.

Valentine’s Day dinners ($75) will be served beginning at 6 p.m. both Feb. 11 and Feb. 14 with swing music by Aurora Bleu.

Bud Kennedy

Andrea Ahles: 817-390-7631, @Sky_Talk

Max B. Baker: 817-390-7714, @MaxbakerBB

Steve Kaskovich: 817-390-7773, @stevekasko

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