I see a new Qdoba Mexican Grille is set to open within days at the corner of 39th & State Line in the venue most recently occupied by Hannah Bistro Cafe. Qdoba is based out of Colorado and was purchased by Jack-In-The-Box last year and there are now over 100 Qdobas in 22 states.
They join two other corporate interlopers on 39th Street -- Chipotle Grill (owned by McDonald's) and Starbucks.
Meanwhile, the former Sun Korean-Chinese restaurant space (which previously had been an Ethiopian restaurant) and the former Muddy's Coffeehouse space sit vacant, as does the site of the former Porter's Market (gourmet-type groceries). I believe the former Tribal Grill space is also empty now. That leaves too much available space for more corporate invasion.
I am not happy.
I worry. The 39th Street Restaurant Row has always had such a unique charm enhanced by the diversity of its many independent restaurants. I fear the day will soon be upon us when there remains only two or three of the current 16 or so independents remain and the rest of the street is overrun with fast food and other chain operations that can be found everywhere.
If you care about your neighborhood independent restaurants and you wish to see them still open in the coming years, please make a big point of patronizing them regularly and frequently. Support them with your dollars and your verbal encouragement!