My vision is starting to come together. As much as there’s a lot of interest in seeing the old Chester downtown district make a comeback, it’s more likely a new business district will be built around our university – like they do in other cities.
Been on North Broad Street in Philly lately? They’ve renamed a portion of it ‘Temple Town.’ Been in West Philly lately? University of Pennsylvanian and Drexel combine to form University City, a entertainment and restaurant mecca.
Could Uno Chicago be the next piece to form a business/entertainment district surrounding Widener University?
Regardless of what happens next, I made it a point to get to Unos on opening day. They consider today a ‘soft’ opening since they have no plans on spending any money on a ‘Grand Opening.’ With the students home for the summer, they’ll count on word of mouth from us locals to dine and drink there while they work out the kinks and ramp up to September when school reopens.
The space is gorgeous; the staff is friendly; the TVs are Sony; the food is great; the beer is craft; the parking is adequate; and there is outdoor seating that accommodates smokers.
I spoke with Training Coordinator, Dan McClintock, who said they have a staff of 100 of the most excited employees he’s ever seen for a opening. Fifty percent of them have never worked in the food and beverage industry and he expects some attrition once business peaks and the newbies see how difficult the service industry can be.
Until then, they’re going to enjoy a slow ramp up to when the students return and football season begins. That’s when things will really be on & popping.