Edgewater Drive is gearing up for a number of changes in the coming weeks and months, as some businesses start shifting locations along the corridors, and new ones are expected to start arriving.
Andrea Kudlacz, executive director of the College Park Partnership, said that the popular restaurants, hair salons, antique shops and other businesses that draw so much foot traffic to College Park are staying put, while some welcome new additions are likely to make it even better.
One change is coming to the building that once housed the Taste Restaurant at 717 W. Smith St.
That property is now being remodeled so that it can welcome in PR’s Taco Palace.
The Mexican restaurant has been operating on Fairbanks Avenue in Winter Park since 1987, and decided to open a second location in College Park when the building off Edgewater Drive near the Truffles & Trifles gourmet store became available last December.
There are already picnic tables that have been placed out in front of the new PR’s, which is still undergoing interior renovations.
Another change is coming to the former Ace Hardware property on Edgewater Drive.
The spacious building will be turned into space for three separate offices, Kudlacz said, and there is already one tenant ready to move in this fall: Yogen Fruz, the frozen yogurt shop that originated in Canada in 1986 and has since expanded into 42 countries.
Because that particular building is just too large for one company, Kudlacz said, “They’re doing it in thirds.”
The new shop, she said, will offer mix-it-yourself frozen yogurt and toppings.
“They already have one in Downtown Disney and Lake Nona, and now they’re coming here,” she said.
Another change: the Dunkin Donuts at 2603 Edgewater Drive is moving, Kudlacz said, to a new building being constructed right up the street near Edgewater High School.
“That new building will have a drive through for Dunkin Donuts,” Kudlacz said, “and the current Dunkin Donuts space will be vacant.”
Old Florida National Bank, the branch at 646 W. Smith St., is also moving to make way for the new apartment complex called The Princeton at College Park.
Old Florida will be moving father down Edgewater Drive.
The businesses at the intersection of Smith Street and Edgewater Drive, like the Tijuana Flats at 2217 Edgewater Drive, are staying put, Kudlacz said.
“They all have long-term leases,” she said.
Kudlacz noted that with so much variety to offer patrons and visitors, the College Park Partnership – which is part of Orlando’s Main Street Districts program – has been working to get out the word about Edgewater Drive to the region’s visitors and tourists as well.
“We’re a member of Visit Orlando,” she said of the agency that is the official source for Orlando travel planning.
Kudlacz said the College Park Partnership works with Visit Orlando to make sure the city’s tourists know what Edgewater Drive has to offer.
“They don’t all want to just to go the theme parks,” she said. “They want to go to the real Orlando. We’ve got not only amazing restaurants and spas, but we’ve got a neighborhood feel.”
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