After more than three years on West Franklin Street, Old Chicago Pizza & Taproom will serve its last slice in Chapel Hill this weekend.
Efforts to reach CraftWorks Restaurants and Breweries Inc., the company that owns the Old Chicago pizza chain, were unsuccessful Wednesday. A manager at the Chapel Hill location confirmed the restaurant would close Sunday but declined any further comment.
The restaurant, which opened in 2014, was the first Old Chicago location in North Carolina. Since then, locations in Fayetteville and Jacksonville have opened.
With the closing of Old Chicago, the 140 West Franklin mixed-use development will now have two notable restaurant vacancies. Lime Fresh Mexican Grill closed there in 2015, and the space still sits vacant.
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Meg McGurk, executive director of the Chapel Hill Downtown Partnership, said the closing of both Lime and Old Chicago doesn’t mean the 140 West development is an unattractive location.
“The spaces at 140 West Franklin St. are now uniquely positioned between Carolina Square and the coming AC Marriott Hotel,” she wrote in an email. “It's got great potential for the right retail and commercial tenants in the middle of the downtown business district. I don’t believe the location is the problem here – but rather it needs the right commercial options for the downtown community.”
This is the second closing of a large chain on Franklin Street this year. In May, Carolina Ale House closed its location on West Franklin Street after a year and a half of being open there.