Movement is slow on numerous new businesses in Keizer

By ERIC A. HOWALD
Of the Keizertimes

A number of sites throughout Keizer are being eyed by businesses small and large, not the least of which is a second grocery store.

While news on some of the projects is minimal at this point, the Keizertimes receives regular requests for updates on where the projects stand. Here are some of the highlights of what is known about the current situations at each location.

Winco Foods

In October 2016, Winco announced it would open a smaller-scale store, Waremart by Winco, at the location formerly occupied by Albertson’s and then Haggen, 5450 River Road N.

There is still no set opening date despite rumors otherwise.

In March, permits were approved for a $5 million renovation to the property. Construction is set to begin early this summer, said a company spokesperson.

Jersey Mike's Subs

Jersey Mike’s, a sub sandwich shop at 5001 River Road N., opened for business Wednesday, May 17.

The franchisers, Joseph and Cathleen Karcher, are partnering with local schools for a fundraiser through Sunday, May 21. Coupons are circulating offering a free regular sub sandwich for a minimum contribution of $2 to the McNary High School Choir, Clear Lake Elementary School and Keizer Elementary School. Customers must have the coupon to be eligible.

“The Keizer community is a great fit for what we do at Jersey Mike’s. For the first five days that we are open we are raising money for the local schools. Our goal is to make a positive impact on the community by supporting local student programs and activities,” said Joe Karcher in a press release.

The restaurant’s hours are 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.  The phone number is 503-967-6576.

Jersey Mike’s is a fast casual sub sandwich franchise with more than 1,500 locations open and under development nationwide.

The Human Bean

In the same building, on the side with the drive-thru, a Human Bean coffee shop is slated for sometime in the near future.

Permits to renovate the inside of the site were submitted to Marion County last week and call for $130,000 in improvements.

Taco

A Mexican restaurant will take up the site between Jersey Mike’s and Human Bean, but there is no name besides the property owner in permit requests sent to Marion County.

The permit is for a sit-down restaurant with a bar area and secluded lottery area.

Café Yumm!

Eugene-based Cafe Yumm! is coming to Keizer Station in the near future.

Cafe Yumm!, a fast casual restaurant, serves up Yumm! Bowls, wraps, soups, salads, and sandwiches with a focus on natural chicken and turkey breast and plenty of vegetarian and gluten-free options.

Franchisees Sean and Anna Zorn are expanding their operation from Salem to Keizer. Marne Dunder, marketing manager for Cafe Yumm!, said the Zorns were the first franchisees to bring drive-thru service to the chain and make it fit the concept’s dining style.

“Everything we make is prepared fresh to order, so restaurant concepts like ours usually do not offer a drive-through service, but (the Zorns) worked with the chain to develop the service. Drive-up orders as well as call-ahead with pick up at the window have been very popular at the (south Salem) Cafe Yumm!. Two restaurants opened since have been built to include a drive-through,” Dunder said.

Cafe Yumm! has 21 restaurants, and ten were opened in the past five years (the Salem location opened in 2014).

Dunder said the opening date cannot be predicted this early in the process.

CineMagic

Negotiations for a possible movie theater, Cinemagic, at a Keizer Station are continuing at the city level.

In October 2016, owner Chuck Nakvasil announced he hoped to build a medium-sized, first-run theater across from the Salem-Keizer Transit Center. The process is moving slowly because, rather than purchasing the property outright, Nakvasil would like to lease the city-owned land.

This could be a first for the city, which would then have an annual income stream from the property. In the past, Keizer city councilors have declined to retain ownership of property, but selling parcels off gives the city revenues a one-time shot in the arm while leases create a continuing source of revenue.

Talks currently are between city staff and Nakvasil. When necessary, city councilors have been weighing in on the proceedings during executive sessions.

Nakvasil owns six other theaters in Oregon and Washington, but the Keizer theater appears to be the first further south than Canby.

The Old Roth's

The Roth’s lettering was removed from the building in June of 2012. (KEIZERTIMES/File photo)

Earlier this year there were rumors, and an actual Facebook announcement, of a skating rink taking the space once occupied by Roth’s IGA on River Road.

Those plans have yet to materialize and several attempts to connect with the group proposing the idea fell through.

As yet, no official announcements have been made for the space.