Shuttered shops on East Main Street to get new life in St. Charles

Published: Friday, Jan. 31, 2014 5:30 a.m. CDT • Updated: Friday, Jan. 31, 2014 7:44 a.m. CDT
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(Sandy Bressner – sbressner@shawmedia.com)
The Wendy’s restaurant on East Main Street in St. Charles has closed.

ST. CHARLES – A doughnut shop and a hot dog joint are expected to bring new life to two shuttered stores on East Main Street in St. Charles.

City planner Matt O’Rourke said it’s nice to see the reinvestment along East Main Street, which recently was reconstructed from Seventh Avenue in St. Charles to Route 59 in West Chicago.

The Wendy’s near Dunham Road was one such business that closed during construction, but the building soon will reopen as a different restaurant. Crews have been working since November to transform the building at 2526 E. Main St. into a Franky’s Red Hots, which offers such fare as pizza, beef, gyros, hot dogs and ribs.

“We redid everything,” owner Franky Spano said, promising it won’t look like a Wendy’s.

The West Chicago resident said he always has been looking for a second location, and the site on East Main Street near Dunham Road caught his eye. Unlike his Addison location, he said, the St. Charles store will have a drive-thru.

Franky’s Red Hots plans to open by March 1, although some exterior improvements might not be finished until after winter, Spano said. He said he plans to hire about 15 to 20 people. Applications will be taken at the restaurant Saturdays and Wednesdays from noon to 3 p.m. and Mondays from 4 to 8 p.m., Spano said.

Candidates will be called back for an interview, and training will be done in Addison, he said.

East Main Street might also get a Dunkin’ Donuts. O’Rourke said the franchisee looking to put a Dunkin’ Donuts on Route 38 also is interested in the former Qdoba at 2701 E. Main St., which neighbors a T-Mobile store.

“When I think about that space, it’d be tough to get another restaurant in there,” O’Rourke said. “It’s nice that somebody’s looking at doing that.”

The Plan Commission and St. Charles City Council are expected to review a request for a drive-thru stacking space reduction, O’Rourke said. The ordinance requires that 15 spaces be provided, he said.

The issue could come to the Plan Commission as early as next week, O’Rourke said.

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