It looks like local IHOP fans with syrupy hopes for a Med City pancake emporium had their order canceled by COVID-19.
The outlook for a long-awaited Rochester IHOP looked sunny-side up at the start of 2020 with early permits being filed in December 2019, followed by floorplans in February that showed a complex anchored by a 4,177-square-foot IHOP restaurant with an attached 3,000-square-foot space for a future, unnamed tenant.
It would have been sandwiched between Tap House West End and a First Alliance Credit Union branch. Both are along West Circle Drive Northwest, just down the road from Five West Kitchen and the Smoak barbecue restaurant.
Neither the developer, Dimension Development Partners, nor the Glendale, Calif.-based restaurant chain would confirm or deny the project. However, the plans were labeled very clearly with the IHOP logo, which made it plain that the breakfast eatery was on its way.
And, like so many other 2020 projects, that all changed when the pandemic hit hard in March and April, according to local real estate insiders. Finding a tenant for the additional slot in the complex looked pretty bleak at that point, so the word is that the IHOP plans were scrapped.
A filing this week for “a 2,255-square-foot fast food restaurant” also described as “a coffee/donut shop with drive-thru window” is the final sign of the demise of the hoped for IHOP. This new project, proposed by North Rock Real Estate, will sit on the same spot that was marked off for the IHOP.
Not a lot of details are known about the North Rock project yet. However, the coffee and donut label is interesting given how close Moka Coffee and Dunkin’ Donuts are to the West Circle site.
So instead of pancakes, more coffee is in the pipeline to feed Rochester's seemingly unquenchable thirst for caffeine.