Waffle House to open on Franklin Street

Waffle House will soon be joining the ranks of Franklin Street breakfast joints.

The 24-hour breakfast stop will be located at 129 E. Franklin St. — the former location of YoFrutt — though construction has not begun.

“It will most likely be sometime early next year,” said Kelly Thrasher, a spokeswoman for Waffle House.

Davida Sackey, a permit technician for Chapel Hill, said Waffle House has taken out a building permit for the address, though she is not sure whether the permit has been paid for.

“After they have paid for it and the permit is then issued, then they have the ability to start construction work,” she said.

She said construction must start six months after the permit is paid for, or the permit will go void.

Sophomore Paige Purcell said she was extremely excited that Waffle House is coming so close to campus.

“I love Waffle House so much that I bought their waffle mix one time in, like, a 30 gallon bag,” she said.

“I’m so excited there is one coming to Chapel Hill.”

Bobby Funk, assistant director of the Chapel Hill Downtown Partnership, said he thinks Waffle House will be a good addition to Franklin Street dining.

“We’re glad to see vacant space get filled up with a new restaurant,” he said. “It will provide new options for people looking for late night.”

Funk said he was surprised Waffle House would be coming to the center of town.

“It’s good to see a business that’s not usually located in urban core looking at coming to an urban core,” he said.

But not everyone is excited about the newcomer.

Scott Cox, owner of Carolina Coffee Shop, said he thinks the breakfast scene on Franklin Street is already well established.

“I don’t think a Waffle House is a good fit for Franklin Street,” he said.

And some other students prefer to stay loyal to their longtime favorite breakfast spots.

“I am not excited,” said senior Mary Nell Johnson. “I prefer Ye Olde.”

Daisy Maness, the general manager of Ye Olde Waffle Shop, located at 173 E. Franklin St., said she’s not nervous about the competition Waffle House might bring.

“I don’t think it will make any difference. We each have our own little niche and our own following,” she said.

But Waffle House will offer something others don’t — late night breakfast dining.

“Who doesn’t love late night Waffle House?” freshman Colin McDowell said.

“It’s like the food gets better the later you eat there.”

Contact the desk editor at city@dailytarheel.com.

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