Dairy Queen To Close with Plans To Reopen In Trinity Triangle Development

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A post on a local list serv notes that Decatur’s Dairy Queen on East Trinity Place – one of the oldest, continuously operated restaurants in the city – has a sign posted announcing that they are closing this month.  The poster goes on to ask if DQ has a space in the new Trinity Triangle development or whether they are closing for good.

According to Asst. City Manager Lyn Menne, though nothing is finalized yet, the design plans for Trinity Triangle include space for the Dairy Queen.

Stay tuned.

Photo courtesy of Google Streetview

60 thoughts on “Dairy Queen To Close with Plans To Reopen In Trinity Triangle Development”

  1. Nooooooooooo!

    I love my Farm Burger and Morelli’s but I also love my 5 dollar buck lunch and my soft serve swirl cone with butterscotch. I really hope they reopen in the new development. It’d be a shame if they didn’t. We can’t survive on $10 burgers and $6 ice creams alone!

    1. I have been eating that combo since I was a mere pup. I knew we had a very important connection, but didn’t realize just how important….

  2. It is great that “the design plans for Trinity Triangle include space for the Dairy Queen” but how much (more, no doubt) will the rent be, what about parking, and does the space work for the DQ? These folks have been terrific, generous members of the community for many years. Are their interests being protected?

    1. It’s definitely not a surprise to anyone. Dairy Queen, at both the corporate and franchise level, have been engaged in the planning of Trinity Triangle for years. Prior to the recession, I definitely recall the project design being modified through a process of back and forth with DQ.

      1. Yes, it is a surprise. I never thought I’d see the day when the Decatur DQ actually got torn down for more apartments or condos or whatever the hell we don’t need. All the developers and corporate folks see is money. Nevermind what it means for the community.

        1. But the free market and lack of government interference cures all ills,,,,

          (Sorry, I couldn’t resist.) Incoming!

        2. The value to the community isn’t really in the building, unless you place a high value on admittedly endearing kitsch. The value’s in the proprietors who, as many here have noted, are awesome. There’s a DQ on Lawrenceville Highway that looks almost exactly the same, but the experience of going there is often quite different.

          If the owners of the property are looking to redevelop (which, last I checked, was their right) in a way that meets the goals of the city, and those plans ensure a place for DQ once the dust settles (which, last I heard, they do), that would seem to me to be something to be admired rather than scorned, because it acknowledges the DQ and its proprietors and the role they’ve played in our community. Yes, it will impose change and present challenges that will need to be addressed. But under normal circumstances, in most places, the status quo is “we’re redeveloping, see you later.” I’ll take this over that.

          1. But wasn’t the original plan to keep the kitschy building until the new space was ready so they wouldn’t have to close? If so, isn’t there also value in sticking to your word and not going behind their back to kick them out for (a minimum of) 16 months?

            1. We’re digging way back so I’m not entirely positive about that but, if I recall correctly, the plan was to retain a standalone DQ, but not for it to be the same one, in part because DQ corporate wanted a drive-thru. There was still going to be redevelopment, with all its associated disruptions, so I don’t believe much has changed on that front.

              1. The sticking point to me would be if there was an original agreement to eliminate, or at least minimize, the time the business would be shut down. If there was, and the developer is renegging on that, I would hope there would be some sort of compensation that would allow the franchisees to weather the down time.

                I think the original plan was to move the DQ into the ground floor of the new building, That may have been altered because of DQ corporate policy. If so, that’s just stupid but the problem lies more with DQ than the developer in that case.

                Whatever the situation, I’m just sad to be losing the DQ for whatever time it’s down. I just hope the down time doesn’t mean a de facto eviction if the owners can’t survive the interruption in their business.

                1. “Whatever the situation, I’m just sad to be losing the DQ for whatever time it’s down. I just hope the down time doesn’t mean a de facto eviction if the owners can’t survive the interruption in their business.”

                  Agreed. I hope all parties — the property owner/developer, the city, DQ corporate, and our local DQ proprietors — can work together as partners in shared success rather than as perpetrators and victims. I have no guarantee that’ll happen, of course, and I’ll be sad if it doesn’t. But I really believe that, if it’s to happen anywhere, it would be here.

                  1. I appoint you, Ted. Go ask them and tell us what they say. Be sure to spell their names correctly and quote them accurately.

          2. Also worth bearing in mind that as a franchise, the DQ corporation must have a role to play in this. If they know they have a good franchisee in Decatur they will probably help them manage the disruption. the bigger question is whether the rental and other overheads in the new development will allow them to continue in business successfully.

  3. Correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t there some issue with DQ corporate on the redevelopment? Like, all new DQs going forward (and all renovations of existing DQs) have to have a drive-thru? I’d swear I heard that on here.

    1. “Like, all new DQs going forward (and all renovations of existing DQs) have to have a drive-thru?”

      If true, that’s a stupid policy.

      1. Stupid, but plausible. Maybe the Downtown Development folks could lean on them thus: if they insist on having a drive-through, then they’ll be required to provide separate lanes for cars, bicycles, and strollers. ‘Cause that’s the way folks roll in Decatur. Or they could do it the easy way, just honor the walkability cult(ure) and forego the drive-through altogether.

  4. Those lovely folks are valuable members of the community – I hope DQ corporate has a place to tide them over in the interim

  5. My husband and I were there yesterday and talked to the owners. Apparently the landlord did all this “behind their back” and they do not have a choice about closing. They said it
    Would be atleast 16mths before the could
    Reopen in the new location. How will this affect the owners, workers and their familes! I am sad for them, and for all of us who have to do without them for so long.
    My husband suggested moving their blizzard machine to a food truck for now 🙂

  6. Isn’t there some empty space right across the street from the high school? Probably not suitable, but sure would be popular after school!

  7. 16 months? That’s crazy!
    I do remember the original negotiations stating that the DQ would be part of the development and would add a drive-thru, but having to be closed for almost a year and half seems a little extreme. What are the owners and employees supposed to do?

  8. I believe the sign said February 22nd would be their last day until the new shop is open. I just hope they can hang on that long and reopen. Great people!

  9. DQ is the best run business in Decatur. Friendly staff that appreciates your business. I have never been in the establishment when it was not spotless or someone was cleaning. A sad day for Decatur.

  10. My son will be so sad. It’s our tradition after he earns each new karate belt to go get lunch and a chocolate xtreme blizzard. And he loves his routines and traditions. We’ll have to move to the Lawrenceville Highway one, but it won’t be the same.

  11. wish they would/could move into the Diner/Hola space for 16 months. I know, no parking. But there is the free 1 hour parking lot behind parkers.

  12. There are certain things that should never change about Decatur. This is one of them. It really makes me sick that the City wouldn’t fight for keeping this DQ as is. Ridiculous.

  13. The franchise owners have been there for YEARS but don’t own the building? Wow, I assumed they did. I’m not familiar with precisely where the Trinity Triangle is supposed to be.

    1. It’s the triangle from the DQ back along Howard encompassing the former location of Our Sister’s Room, then north to the area about 30 feet behind Twain’s and back along Trinity to the DQ. Formerly contained the No-Tell Motel and the County/City temporary building that at one time was an A&P. Hence the name.

      1. Maybe we need to bring back the No-Tell Motel. It kept real estate prices down city-wide AND kept the over-the -top snobbery at bay.

          1. Not the Square Table?! I thought you practically lived in that place. Or am I thinking of another commenter here?

            1. Heh. That was probably me. Except I tried to avoid the place. Loved Speros, but hated the food he tried to make me eat when I dropped the rent check off there 🙂

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