Burrito Gallery is getting the Downtown Investment Authority’s backing on its expansion.
The DIA moved to approve Burrito Gallery’s request for $73,000 to renovate its Adams Street location, a building that it has occupied for 10 years. The money is part of the DIA’s retail enhancement grant program, which seeks to encourage business growth in the urban core.
During the meeting, members of the DIA board were quick to praise Burrito Gallery’s success, citing its expansion to Brooklyn Station on Riverside Avenue. DIA Chairman Jim Bailey also praised
Burrito Gallery’s decision to stay open until 1:30 a.m. on its three busiest days, Wednesday through Friday — something that he said would fill a desire for more late-night food options, especially for Downtown residents.
Representing Burrito Gallery was one of the owners, Paul Shockey, who said that the expansion, which will involve adding 500 square feet to the kitchen area and renovating the dining room, is necessary for its growth.
“We’re bursting at the seams — we can’t get more people through our doors and we can’t get more food out of our kitchen,” Shockey said.
Burrito Gallery said the expansion also reflects an uptick in business, one that Shockey attributes, in part, to the Jessie Ball duPont Center opening across the street. The nonprofit center brought 200 additional employees to Downtown.
The restaurant will be contributing the rest of the $233,710 project cost itself.
The DIA’s investment comes in the form of a five-year forgivable loan, which is dependent on the project getting off the ground and on Burrito Gallery providing a total of eight full-time employees.
Burrito Gallery is the eighth project funded through the retail enhancement program. The program started with $750,000, and has funded projects including Zodiac, Jimmy John’s and Urban Grind in the Bank of America Tower. Only one project — Jersey Mike’s in the SunTrust Tower — has dropped out of the program.
Members of the board estimated that $2.6 million in work was being done through the program, and 71 jobs were being added.
Just over $398,000 remains up for grabs.