Category Archives: Twin Lakes

Demolition work under way at Twin Lakes in preparation for possible development

WICHITA — In preparation for possible new development, there’s demolition work under way at Twin Lakes, the shopping center at 21st and Amidon that once was Wichita’s premier retail destination.

“The owners are demolishing two portions of the property to clear ground for a new development, but they don’t know what that new development is going to be,” says Brad Saville of Landmark Commercial Real Estate, which manages the property.

The Colorado-based owners “thought it would be better to demolish portions of the center that were obsolete.”

Saville says a couple of areas of the center have been difficult to rent in recent years. That includes the former Sears automotive center on the south side of the property. Saville says the owners are considering doing a multifamily residential development there.

The former cinema at the center, which last was home to Aaron’s, also is being demolished. Saville says that area, which is on the west side of the property along Amidon, could potentially be used for a freestanding retail outlet.

We’ll let you know what happens.

Neighbor’s Restaurant & Bar owner Chuck Giles to reopen Brints Diner

Chuck Giles and Connie Schrader, who are reopening Brints Diner.

WICHITA — Chuck Giles has the happy luck of fulfilling a longtime dream while making some Wichitans very happy in the process.

Giles, who owns Neighbor’s Restaurant & Bar in Twin Lakes, is reopening Brints Diner.

“People are just freaking out because it was closed,” Giles says. “I’ve always wanted a little diner.”

He and his girlfriend, Connie Schrader, are opening the business within the next two weeks.

The more than 50-year-old Brints, which is near the northeast corner of Lincoln and Oliver, closed in October. Former owner Jessie Medina said construction in the area was to blame.

Giles has owned Neighbor’s at 21st and Amidon for more than 10 years and worked at Stroud’s for 10 years before that, first as kitchen manager and then as general manager.

“There’s just really not a lot of old restaurants left in Wichita,” he says.

That’s why he says he was interested in Brints.

“I just think the history of the place is worth something.”

The restaurant, which seats 64, is one of the city’s few remaining Valentine buildings – metal, mobile diners that Wichita’s Valentine Manufacturing built between 1938 and 1971.

“I was told there’s 13 in the country that are still operating,” Giles says.

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After more than two decades at Twin Lakes, Fashion Bug to leave by late January

WICHITA — After more than two decades at the Twin Lakes shopping center, Fashion Bug is preparing to close, though it’s not happening just yet.

“We don’t have a close date yet,” says store manager Lindsey Constable.

She says the store will continue to receive new items through the end of this month.

Sales of as much as 60 percent off are under way.

Constable says when Ascena Retail Group bought Charming Shoppes earlier this year, it decided to close the Fashion Bug chain.

Ascena also owns Maurices, Dress Barn and Justice, which are not going out of business.

Although Constable can’t say for certain when Fashion Bug will close, she says it won’t remain in business past the end of January.

Empire Energy establishes Wichita office following oil well acquisition

UPDATED — An oil acquisition has led to a new lease at Twin Lakes Office Park at 1900 N. Amidon.

Pennsylvania-based Empire Energy is establishing a Wichita office in 1,600 square feet at Twin Lakes.

“We’ve just bought a whole bunch of oil wells in Kansas,” says president and co-CEO Bruce McLeod.

He says his company has purchased about 220 operating wells from TNT Engineering. McLeod says the wells produce about 550 barrels a day for a value of about $57 million.

Lewis Kelley of Landmark Commercial Real Estate handled the lease.

McLeod says Empire is looking for other wells, too.

“We’re looking to expand in Kansas,” he says.

McLeod is a little puzzled by Kansas weather, though.

“Wichita seems like a nice place, although it seems to get very cold there,” he says. “I arrived in a blizzard and left in sunshine.”

Marie’s Bakery for Calorie Counters to open at Twin Lakes

WICHITA — The idea of a bakery serving almost exclusively healthy food might seem like a contradiction, but Lola Hunt says it’s possible.

She’s opening Marie’s Bakery for Calorie Counters next month in Twin Lakes at 21st and Amidon.

“What I’m trying to focus on is healthy eating,” Hunt says.

She says she’ll still have tasty pies, cakes and cookies, but she’ll find substitutions for eggs and sugar or else use smaller amounts when baking.

A dietitian is consulting on her menu.

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Whole Foods is heading to Clear Lakes Shopping Center

WICHITA — Last month, Have You Heard? reported that Whole Foods likely was moving from Twin Lakes to Clear Lakes Shopping Center at 2315 W. 21st Street.

It’s now a done deal.

The Twin Lakes lease is up at the end of this month.

The addition of Whole Foods at Clear Lakes brings that center to 100 percent occupancy.

Scott Harper of Landmark Commercial Real Estate represented Whole Foods in the deal, and Landmark’s Austin Kinzle represented Clear Lakes.

Whole Foods to leave Twin Lakes, likely relocate nearby

WICHITA — The Whole Foods at Twin Lakes is going to be closing and most likely moving nearby.

Leah Gossett, manager of the east-side Whole Foods, says negotiations are under way for the Twin Lakes store to move to just west of 21st and Amidon near the Medicine Shoppe.

Whole Foods’ lease is up at the end of January, though it could remain there a bit longer.

Nothing is finalized yet on the closing or the move.