“There will be no Chicken Mcnuggets at 10th and Union,” Kya Aatai of Seawest Investment Associates tells CHS.
The developer behind the 10th and Union mixed-use apartment building Thursday called word that a McDonald’s fast-food outlet was destined for his building “a crazy rumor.”
CHS has been receiving tips on the global burger slinger coming to Capitol Hill since summer. Apparently Ronald McDonald is rather conspicuous about his interest in the Hill. The rumors reached Big Mac proportions this week with one business owner telling CHS he and others were ready to oppose the fast-food restaurant opening at 10th and Union.
The future 10th and Union. Not married, by the way
But Aatai’s six-story, 79-unit apartment building with heavy commercial square-footage is still a long way from completion and, at this point, talks with interested commercial tenants — mostly food and drink, Aatai says — are in only early stages. McDonald’s is not on the list.
That doesn’t mean Capitol Hill won’t get its first set of Golden ArchesTM in 2013. People familiar with the project say the worldwide burger king may have its french-fried heart set on Broadway.
Joe Klarman, handling commercial leases on behalf of Russell Jones Real Estate for Broadway’s newapartment building, said the only businesses signed for the spaces at this time are Einstein Brothers and Bank of America.
“A myriad of other companies, some big, some small are looking,” he said. “We’re not close enough to comment on any of them.”
Klarman said most of the interest in the remaining Broadway frontage on the south end of the building has been from restaurants. The Thomas commercial side of the building has drawn interest from retail and fitness focused businesses, he said. We talked to Klarman about the project’s commercial prospects earlier this year. The building will open to residents in November.
McDonald has not confirmed its interest in Broadway or Pike/Pine or both or neither. The company has not yet responded to our inquiry. Its closest locations are on First Hill and downtown at 3rd and Pine and on 5th Ave.
Meanwhile, Capitol Hill has developed a burger economy of its own in recent years. Marked by the arrival of Blue Moon, 8oz Burger Bar and Li’l Woody’s, the neighborhood suddenly finds itself very well provided for on the hamburger end of the party people food + drink pyramid. And there is more to come.
Pike/Pine’s developments moving into construction phases will undoubtedly bring more rumors — and more concern to a neighborhood that has branded its business ventures with an emphasis on independence and local. CHS reported on another rumor that spread rapidly thanks to a marketing survey asking about a possible grocery store at 11th and Pine. Brace yourself for more. Pushing back on big chains has been done in places like San Francisco’s Mission District. But even the Mission has a McDonald’s.
Capitol Hill, on the other hand, has been rough on global chains lately — especially in the food and drink space. The coffee end of things suffered two dings in recent weeks — Peet’s Coffee announced it would shutter its Broadway location while the re-organizing Tully’s chain abandoned its Pike at Broadway outlet last month. We’ve also processed a Taco Bell, a KFC, a Jack in the Box and two Burger Kings in recent memory plus a few you might forget like Boston Market, Sizzler and a Skipper’s. Global chains will come and go with some replacing themselves. But, apparently, not at 10th and Union.
The old Broadway Taco Bell, now buried deep ‘neath the Joule (Image: Ella Li via Facebook)