J. Colin Underhill of Underhill Associates recently spoke at the Beechmont Women’s Club about the progress on restoring and revitalizing the Colonial Gardens property near Iroquois Park, reports F&D contributor Michael Jones. According to Underhill, his company is working on four different restaurant concepts that will share an outdoor space featuring tables and a performance area. The idea is to return to the property to its beer garden roots.
Underhill’s principle message was that his group is trying to get a mixture of concepts that don’t compete but support each other, so Colonial Gardens will be sustainable on days when Iroquois Park is not hosting events. To this end, Underhill has garnered letters of interest from a pizza place, an American cuisine restaurant, a taco restaurant, and a breakfast place. Although specific names of the interested parties will not be released until leases are signed, the scuttlebutt is that several local restaurateurs are making proposals for use of the nostalgic property.
Jones explained that the Colonial Gardens property was split into three parcels for rental by the former owners: the original building, a space that was a used tire place, and Little Caesar’s current location. Little Caesar’s is the last tenant, but is expected to vacate the property by August 14. Environmental abatement is a possible problem because of potential contamination by prior tenants, such as a dry cleaner that used to be in the back of the original Colonial Gardens building.
Underhill said he hopes to have the pricing and environment issues settled in September so construction can begin. Underhill said the plans include renovation of the old two-level original Colonial Gardens restaurant building, which has about 7,000 square feet of space.
The project will include about 9,000 square feet of adjoining space in two new one-level buildings, plus a garden area and an outdoor patio for dining and live entertainment that the four restaurants will share. He is looking at Fall of 2018 for openings, Jones reported.