Sunday, May 24, 2015

Chipotle wants Susanna Foo's Center City location

A burrito war on Walnut Street.

Chipotle wants Susanna Foo's Center City location

Extremely primitive photo illustration / The Insider
Extremely primitive photo illustration / The Insider

For nearly a quarter-century until it closed last June, Susanna Foo Chinese Cuisine was one of the landmarks of Philadelphia's Restaurant Row, occupying the brownstone at Walnut and Sydenham Streets.

Foo sold 1512 Walnut to a partnership that intends to redevelop the property.

The building's upper floors are being fashioned into apartments, but I can report exclusively that the prospective new tenant for the ground floor is Chipotle Mexican Grill, a growing quick-serve concept.

Talk is that this location -- Chipotle's first Center City spot -- will respect the building with a green design and will be a flagship of sorts.

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The developer, 1512 Walnut Partners LP, has filed papers with the city Zoning Board of Adjustment to fast-track a use variance to allow accessory takeout. Its hearing date is scheduled for Feb. 3.

If it's granted, perhaps we'll see an all-out burrito war with the Qdoba down the block. (Both eateries should experience a degree of synergy with the Apple store coming to 1607 Walnut.)

I've left messages with Chipotle reps to seek further details, such as a timeline.
About this blog
Michael Klein, the editor/producer of, writes about the local restaurant scene in his Inquirer column "Table Talk." Have a question? Email it! See his Inquirer work here.

Michael Klein
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