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What Should Go In Next to the Arlington Cafe on Summer Street?

In our "Visions for Vacancies" series, we ask you what you'd like to see in vacant buildings or lots around Arlington.

Each month Arlington Patch presents a new vacant building or lot and asks you to tell us what you think would be the best use for it.

Forget what zone it's in, setback regulations and all the other zoning jargon that puts most people to sleep. If you had your way, what would you like to see there? What would be the best use for the community?

This month's vacancy is the newly-renovated storefronts, next to the Arlington Cafe, at 469-473 Summer St. In June, owner Thomas Vakalfotis to put "Arlington Heights Liquors" there, but the Board of Selectmen . The space is about 2,500 square feet, according to Vakalfotis' application.

What do you think should go in these storefronts? Let us know by posting a comment below.

dan August 24, 2012 at 11:09 AM
A McDonald or burger king, not a bank or resturant
ACMcG August 24, 2012 at 01:35 PM
An independent coffee shop or book store with cafe. I love my Starbucks, but it would be great to have a good local spot. Definitely not fast food :(
Joe August 24, 2012 at 02:08 PM
A Wendy's or Arby's would be nice, not many of them in this area. But not alot of parking there. Although I don't think we'll ever see a McDonald's or Burger King or similar place in Arlington. Whatever happened to that ice cream shop that was there before, maybe they can come back, they'd get alot of business from the ball field across the street. Book store would be nice, but sadly there's so many of them closing thanks to Kindle. How about a bookstore with ice cream, food and coffee.
Wind Dummy 25 August 24, 2012 at 02:09 PM
Granny you kill me! I was gonna suggest that! So naturally I say a 25 story bank of condos! With 3 Chinese restaurants and another elementary school at the street level. We can't seem to get enough of either.
Shaun August 24, 2012 at 02:14 PM
The challenge for that spot is always going to be access as there is essentially zero parking and no foot traffic. If that wasn't a factor I would love to see an independent coffee shop, book store, grocery store, ice cream shop or even a kitchen/home goods store. Absolutely no Wendy's, Arby's, Burger King or McDonald's, their food is terrible even by fast food standards. Arlington Cafe probably has the most successful long term model, some sit-in, take-out traffic must mostly delivery. How about some really good Thai or Vietnamese delivery?
Carol Corchado August 24, 2012 at 02:15 PM
I think considering how long the Arlington Cafe has survived there that they should expand. Maybe selling ice cream and s place just to relax while eating . When I first moved into the town it was the Morningside Pharmacy a little ma and pa pharmacy. An ice cream shop would be nice during baseball season but what happens when it's over.
Joe August 24, 2012 at 02:20 PM
True about the parking, think there's even less since they installed the traffic lights. I believe that's why the convenience store didn't last because of lack of parking and maybe a few robberies. What places do you consider good by fast food standards? Isn't there already Thai and Vietnamese places in the center and heights that deliver, or are they not that good and you're looking for a better place.
Joe August 24, 2012 at 02:28 PM
That's interesting about the ma and pa pharmacy, another thing that's almost gone from the past. I remember when there was quite a few mom and pop stores in most towns. Now everything chains, drug stores and restaurants and donut shops. Isn't there like three CVS and three Walgreen's in the little town of Arlington, and then one or so right over the town lines. Maybe a locally owned business would do well here...
john bishop August 24, 2012 at 04:08 PM
a head shop
MO August 24, 2012 at 04:18 PM
I LOVE the coffee/book shop idea... I have also always thought that the low clearance on that building lends itself easily to roof top sitting, dining? Watch the kiddies play ball??
Tim August 24, 2012 at 04:21 PM
How about a meeting room for AA or NA or even better BPA ( beer pong anonymous ) ....
Wind Dummy 25 August 24, 2012 at 04:26 PM
Why on earth would anyone consider putting a low profit high rent, barley assessable business on that sight? Just so a few can have a cup off coffee? Makes no business sense at all. The best suitors for that spot is an ATM, maybe, or another convenience store. (and they would have to move a ton of lottery). The town + rent + remodel $$'s makes it very tough for small business to get established & survive. So naturally It attracts very few. The cafe probably would love to expand but space to profit probably wouldn't allow for that. They also have a huge nut to crack every month. Thank goodness they have a great product or they'd be gone also. Support all local business when you can is my point.
Tim August 25, 2012 at 04:05 AM
I think another. Chinese resturant would be great ....
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Betty Logan August 26, 2012 at 05:12 AM
Bring back Chummie's! :) A variety/ice cream/penny candy shop...cater to the kids & parents playing team sports across the street. No fast food! No banks! No Chinese food!! No chain Pharmacy!! and no Dunkin !!!!! An Independent coffee shop would be nice. Fresh fruit and vegetables. I wish custom framing was still viable because I would open a shop there!!! I'm glad to see they remodeled but parking needs to be addressed.
Wind Dummy 25 August 26, 2012 at 04:54 PM
Again with the low profit / rent issues? No bank will touch it. Coffee is a volume biz ice cream even a worse margin. If the folks own the property out right they can wait for a renter but still have tax loss.(remodeled so they own it looks like) If they owe the bank and with all the tax burden. Then they need someone in there now. Also the omni present town has to approve any commercial, it will have take the right biz to make it there. Maybe you begin to see how important small business is and how tough to survive and profit in this country lately... Pizza anyone?
Bob C September 08, 2012 at 01:59 PM
If Myth Romney is elected president then maybe that would be a great place for a soup kitchen for the middle class workers1

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