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Downtown Eating Evolution

By Eric Richardson
Published: Monday, August 14, 2006, at 02:28PM
No More McDonalds Eric Richardson [Flickr]

The Downtown eating scene has definitely evolved over the past few years, particularly with the proliferation of places popping up in the Historic Core. I think it's interesting, though, to take a look at how food choices are changing in the business district as well.

Last month I mentioned that the 7th/Flower Burger King has closed. In that same post I noted that I had heard rumors the McDonalds across the street would suffer a similar fate. As of yesterday it closed permanently, with a note in the window directing patrons to either City National Plaza or 7th and Hill. The rumor I heard had the building owners hoping to attract a nicer restaurant or a bar into the space.

So 7th/Flower -- a busy pedestrian corner with lots of office space nearby -- has now lost La Salsa, Great Steak and Potato (both to Roosevelt Lofts construction), McDonalds and Burger King. 6th/Grand lost its Carls Jr. to residential construction (though it is slated to return). Of the traditional fast food places there is still a McDonalds in City National Plaza and a Carls Jr. in Macy's Plaza but both are underground and invisible from the street.

At the same time, alternative fast food places are on the rise. 6th/Hope picked up Wolfgang Puck Express, Subway, Loose Leaf, Juice it Up! and Mitaki. 7th/Hope got Camile's and Qdoba. City National picked up a few off-beat eateries as well.

Is this a trend? Are the traditional players losing out? Or is this all just the result of peculiarities in buildings and leases?

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