Construction is coming along at the new Freddy's Frozen Custard & Steakburgers and Panera Bread at the southeast corner of Ridge Road and University (between Maple and Kellogg) across from Lowe's .
"We're skin tight," says Randy Simon .
That's what business partner Scott Redler told him Friday, which Simon understands to mean the frame is up along with a layer of insulation, among other progress.
"I'm not much of a construction guy, as you can tell."
Simon says the partners recently purchased another nearby house.
"When we got to looking at it, it just looked like we could stand a little extra parking — we hope. We hope the volume's good enough that it will warrant it."
Look for the restaurants to open in mid-February.
Yet another new store is coming to Westgate Market on West Kellogg.
Dollar Tree will open at 6840 W. Kellogg on April 1.
It will join Northern Tool & Equipment , which is coming to the center in February, and Mattress Hub , which also is opening there in the new year.
Dollar Tree is taking the former Petco space, which is more than 10,000 square feet.
Leisa Lowry with J.P. Weigand & Sons handled the deal for Dollar Tree.
... and going
The Derby Smashburger has closed, but not for long. Whether it reopens in Derby, though, remains to be seen.
Franchisee Ron Chaulk , who took over the Derby restaurant in September, is looking for a new site. He has three under consideration, including one in Derby.
"We haven't pulled the trigger on any of them yet," Chaulk says.
He expects to in the first quarter of 2011.
"We're definitely going to reopen."
Chaulk isn't closing or relocating his east-side Smashburger near 35th and Woodlawn.
"We're happy with that store."
Chaulk thinks the Wichita metro area could support three or four Smashburgers. After opening the next one in the early part of 2011, he says a third could follow by the end of the year.
We'll let you know.
You don't say
"There are hipsters crying in the street right now."
—Kirby's Beer Store fan Mike Marlett , writing on Facebook about how the jukebox at the popular bar (which has played the same records for years) is being replaced