Business

McHenry Arby's closes, Panera planning to move in

Arby's in McHenry has closed. Panera Bread is in the process of buying the property to move  its location from across the street and add a drive-thru.
Arby's in McHenry has closed. Panera Bread is in the process of buying the property to move its location from across the street and add a drive-thru.

McHENRY – The Arby’s at 1800 N. Richmond Road in McHenry has closed, but the space shouldn’t sit unoccupied for long.

Shortly after the fast-food restaurant closed its doors, the location has drawn the eye of another McHenry restaurant.

“Panera Bread is currently in the process of purchasing the existing Arby’s location to build a new restaurant with a drive-thru,” McHenry Mayor Wayne Jett said.

McHenry has an existing Panera with no drive-thru at 1711 N. Richmond Road, across the street from the former Arby’s. The store would close that location to move into the new space, Jett said.

Arby’s might not be leaving the area for good, however, Jett said.

“Economic Development Director Doug Martin and staff are working with Arby’s to build a new restaurant on Route 120 in the current months,” he said.

A timeline for the process isn’t yet know, Jett said.

Martin wasn’t available for comment Friday.

Panera has numerous stores in McHenry County, including in Crystal Lake, Woodstock, Algonquin, Fox River Grove and McHenry, according to its website. The enterprise operates more than 2,000 bakery-cafe hybrids across the U.S.

Plans for a Panera with a drive-thru also are underway in Huntley.

Atlanta-based Arby’s operates only two McHenry County restaurants, one in Crystal Lake and one in Lake in the Hills, according to its website.

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