It was five year ago when Harvey Garrett posted on this cozy little Connecticut Street building. At the time, Mark Supples, owner of Mother’s Restaurant had purchased it with the intent of converting it into a restaurant. Since that time the structure has sat quiet and apparently dormant. Just last weekend, after attending the Connecticut Street Fair, I heard the sounds of someone working inside, so I decided to stop in to see if plans were finally back on track.
It was Chris D’Andrea who came around from the side of the building to tell me that my hunch had been correct. He and Mark were in the process of converting the historic single-storey structure into a West Side lunch spot that would most likely also serve some kind of breakfast fare. According to Chris, the eatery is scheduled to be operational by September. He also told me that the house-looking structure was one of the oldest on the street, though it had, at one point, caught on fire and had lost the second floor.
I peeked through the window to find that work was indeed well underway. New floors and counters had been added, giving the interior a fresh and clean look. As of yet there is no name for the restaurant, but Chris alluded that it will probably incorporate the name of the street – a street that is now rebounding thanks to investments by D’Youville College, exciting residential and commercial projects, a solid business community, public art projects and a diverse activist community.
Side note: Is anyone familiar with a West Side grant program to cover the exposed gas meters that were installed in the front of buildings? I am aware of grants awarded to residents in historic Allentown to provide funds to hide these eyesores. It would be nice to see the grant program extended further – how on earth did National Fuel get away with this outrageous meter relocation project without being accountable for the eyesores they were creating?