Dining, hotel park to be built here

September 29, 2004|by JULIE E. GREENE

WASHINGTON COUNTY - Three restaurants new to Washington County are to open in the spring in Valley Center at Railway, a casual dining and hotel park being developed by Bowman Development Corp., the company president said Tuesday.

David Taylor said The Bowman Group is acquiring a franchise license to open and operate a hotel with a nationally recognized name. The hotel, with 85 to 100 suites, would be designed for people who want to stay three or more days, Taylor said.

The restaurants are Buffalo Wild Wings Grill & Bar, Cheeseburger in Paradise and Carrabbas, an Italian restaurant, Taylor said.

The Valley Center at Railway is an approximately 30-acre planned casual dining and hotel park along Railway Lane that already has an Outback Steakhouse, Holiday Inn Express and a Bob Evans, which opened Sept. 13.


"We like the synergy of what's happening in Hagerstown across from the (Valley) Mall with Bob Evans, the Outback, Holiday Inn Express ...," said Harry Kokkinakis, a franchise co-owner of Buffalo Wild Wings Grill & Bar.

Kokkinakis is one of the owners of a franchise that has rights to Maryland, Michigan and a Chicago suburb and has 12 restaurants open now, he said.

Kokkinakis estimated the project would cost $1 million and the restaurant would employ approximately 45 people.

Kokkinakis said the family-oriented, sports-theme restaurant features 12 signature sauces for the wings, from a mild sauce to Blazin', which the restaurant chain's corporate Web site states "Gives your innards a torching."

The restaurant has other menu items such as burgers, sandwiches, salads and finger foods.

The typical entree costs $7 to $8, Kokkinakis said.

The chain welcomes families with young children, he said.

"We're clearly a restaurant, except at 9 o'clock at night it probably turns into more of a bar (atmosphere)," Kokkinakis said.

The local restaurant will have seven 10-foot-wide, high-definition projection televisions and 30 flat-screen televisions to show various sporting events, Kokkinakis said.

The restaurants typically open at 11 a.m. and close around 1 a.m., except for Fridays and Saturdays when they could stay open until 2 a.m. On Sundays, Buffalo Wild Wings is open until midnight.

Bowman Development signed a lease with Buffalo Wild Wings for a 6,400-square-foot restaurant, Taylor said.

Anna-Marie Zazzero with Outback Steakhouse Inc. said the deals for Carrabbas and Cheeseburger in Paradise weren't signed yet. Outback Steakhouse Inc. is one of the owners of the Carrabbas and Cheeseburger in Paradise chains.

Taylor said he is finalizing the leases.

Singer Jimmy Buffett is one of the owners of the Cheeseburger in Paradise chain, which has five restaurants in the nation, Zazzero said.

The menu includes the signature cheeseburger, Caribbean- and New Orleans-style dishes and traditional American favorites, according to the chain's Web site.

Construction on the new hotel is expected to start next summer so the hotel can open by July 2006, Taylor said. The hotel will be farther off Railway Lane to the west of land Hagerstown Ford is leasing, according to the design.

When Hagerstown Ford's lease expires, Bowman Development will build retail space there, Taylor said.

The park also will include a 4,000-square-foot quad building for retail use, Taylor said. No leases have been signed for the planned building yet.

That leaves the development with two to three pads left for development, depending on how businesses want the space configured, Taylor said.

The land is owned by Bowman Railway LLC and is being developed by Bowman Development Corp. both of which are subsidiaries of The Bowman Group. The Bowman Group is owned by local businessman Don Bowman and his son, Todd Bowman.

The Herald-Mail Articles