A.V.I. is the historical name for the new restaurant at the Broadview

WICHITA — Ben Arnold and Jeremy Wade have a new name for their restaurant coming to the renovated Broadview. Actually, it’s initials.


That may sound like a trendy West Coast spot, but the name has its roots in something from the Broadview property that existed even before the hotel did.

A.V.I. stands for Arkansas Valley Interurban, which was a freight system that carried people — particularly farmers — too.

“We just did a little research on exactly what the hotel was about,” Arnold says.

He learned that Arkansas Valley Interurban gave $100,000 to the hotel’s construction in 1921 and that the hotel never would have existed without the railway.

The hotel opened in 1922. The A.V.I. Freight System sign and entrance to the depot can still be seen along Waco near where the restaurant will open, which will be in late May or early June when the hotel’s renovation is complete.

Arnold and Wade liked the Arkansas Valley Interurban name.

“The name was too long, obviously,” Arnold says. Not to mention he has trouble saying Arkansas, which he pronounces like the state.

“Excuse me, Ar-Kansas,” he says, correcting himself. “I’m an old Texas boy, so I’ve got to get used to that.”

Arnold says he and Wade thought about calling the restaurant the Freight Station but decided on A.V.I. instead.

“It’s cool sounding.”