Quiznos has closed its downtown location, potentially opening space for a new tenant.
The sandwich shop has been in city-owned space in One Exchange Plaza between Fayetteville and Wilmington streets since 1998. It rented the storefront from Raleigh, which owns much of the building and also leases to La Stella Pizza.
Quiznos recently asked the city to terminate its lease, citing financial hardship. Raleigh plans to terminate the lease effective March 31, according to Billy Jackson, assistant engineering services director.
City Manager Ruffin Hall published Jackson’s summary in his weekly memo.
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“The tenant has built a good rapport with the City, made timely rent payments, and kept the space maintained in good condition,” the memo states.
Quiznos renewed its lease with the city in 2015, agreeing to pay $2,247 a month for the 1,498-square-foot space – about $18 per square foot – until July 2020.
It’s unclear whether the city will put the space back on the market for rent. City staff will evaluate the need for more government space before making a decision, according to the memo.
Quiznos faced several competitors. There are three Subway locations downtown – in the Wells Fargo building, in City Market just south of Moore Square and at the corner of Martin and Fayetteville streets. A Jimmy John’s is in City Plaza, and Linus & Pepper’s sandwich shop is on Salisbury street.
Quiznos’ departure leaves two vacant, city-owned retail spaces in the plaza. Cold Off the Press juice bar recently stopped operating out of the space next door.
A letter from Quiznos owner Raju Ashar appeared in the store window Monday. He thanked customers for their support.
“Although we’re sad to be leaving, the whole team of Downtown Quiznos owes a (huge) debt of gratitude to our customers,” the letter states. “We have acquired more friends than customers who have been part and parcel of daily life of Quiznos and have supported us during (a) tough time.”