If you went to grab lunch at your favorite Subway location on Grand Avenue you may have encountered a problem... it's no longer there.
Oh no, don't worry. There's no need to fear as Subway has moved just down the road to their new location at 4402 Grand Avenue. News broke last Spring that Subway was planning at new store at this location and their original hopes were that the location would open in late Summer. Summer went by, as did fall, but in December the doors opened and the delicious smell of Subway soon filled Duluthians noses at another location.
When opening their new location it solved the question in our minds of whether or not the company would keep BOTH Subway locations on Grand Avenue. What triggered the idea for a new location was the fact that the previous Subway was at a point where its lease renewel was coming up. A Subway worker told us "it was time for an update anyways" which made us chuckle a little as the former location was built in the mid 2000's. That's why we originally found it odd to see another location popping up so close to a relatively new location.
When you think about it for a moment however the move is quite logical. Erbert and Gerbert's, one of Subways direct competitors moved shop a few years ago to a retail building on the same block as the new Subway location. Jimmy John's also opened a shop on the opposite corner in the Denfeld Plaza in part of the space where Hollywood Video use to be. It makes sense that Subway would want to right next to the competitors... and to be honest, it probably doesn't hurt to be right across the street from Denfeld High School. We all know much high school students (and everyone else for that matter) love Subway.
The new location sports the newest Subway prototype featuring a drive through like the previous location and a slightly smaller dining area. Inside you will find glass panels that split the dining space into two. A nice design element featured on those panels is an etching of the trademark New York City wallpaper map (hello 90's) that use to cover Subway locations interior walls . The walls now are a solid color featuring modern (and minimalistic) photographs of vegetables on a white background. The space also features modern light fixtures, digital menu boards, and a very nice stone wall with the Subway logo on it.
The site that Subway has opened their new location at also in the midst of a large redevelopment. In order to make way for Subway a small commercial building was demolished. This entire site is part of a couple block redevelopment of this side of Grand Avenue. ACME Tools kickstarted the redevelopment in the early 2000's and about two years ago we saw the addition of CVS and the retail building next door that houses Erbert and Gerbert's along with a SportClips location and a few other businesses. Whole Foods CO-OP will start construction in spring on their new location which will be constructed between Subway and the retail building and there also are a few remaining spaces for redevelopment to the front of the site next to Subway that are hoped to be redevelopment in the next few years.
The new location is a refreshing take on Subway. It seems that this new prototype is also very similar to the "Subway Cafe" design that is starting to make it's way into Minnesota. Who knows, maybe in a year few years we'll see another new Subway location popup again this time displaying the "Subway Cafe" logo.