Although construction appears to be still a few weeks from completion, Penn Station Subs has begun advertising for staff for its store in a new strip center that is supposed to open by year’s end on North Charles G. Seivers Boulevard between Sonic and Wendy’s.
Called the Clinton Shopping Center, the new four-unit building will be the home to US Cellular, The Noire Nail Bar, Penn Station East Coast Subs and, reportedly, Stefanos Pizza restaurant, a Knoxville-based chain.
Penn Station posted on Facebook on Nov. 10 that “We’re coming to Clinton,” and asked for people to apply to work for the new location. No opening date was given. Penn Station already has locations in Knoxville and Sevierville.
On its website (penn-station.com), Penn Station already lists the Clinton location at 2224 N. Charles Seivers, even though it’s not yet open. The chain has 317 locations in 15 states, and began in Cincinnati. Ohio, in 1985, according to the website. All but one of its stores are franchises.
The city of Clinton in May issued a building permit for the nearly $1 million, 7,000-square-foot shell building at the site. Contractor was listed as Creative Structures, Inc.
Leasing agent is Peter Medlyn of Oliver Smith Realty in Knoxville. The developer for the project is John Davenport and Davenport Construction Co. in Jellico, Medlyn said.
Medlyn could not be reached for comment this week.
Although an early artist’s drawing of the center on the Oliver Smith Realty website showed a Dairy Queen as one of the tenants, Medlyn said that was not accurate.
There were earlier reports that a Dairy Queen “DQ Grill & Chill” restaurant would be built across the highway next to Walgreen’s pharmacy, but Medlyn said the developer of that project “was not able to obtain the necessary franchise,” and would not be going forward with the DQ there, either.
“We are planning to have our center finished by the end of the year,” Medlyn said in May.
At that time, the project was already months behind schedule. A sign posted in spring 2021 on the site said the center would be opening that fall. Then in August 2021, Medlyn told The Courier News that the center would open this spring.
The site is less than a mile from Interstate 75, Exit 122. It will have 75 parking spaces, according to documents on the Oliver Smith Realty website.
Last August, Medlyn said that four businesses would be locating there, including a fast-food restaurant with a drive-through window on one end. At the time, he said he couldn’t yet reveal the name of the pizza restaurant that would be occupying the end space. But it has since been identified in some Facebook posts as Stefano’s.
The 1.2-acre site was owned until recently by LKM Properties, the holding company for Weigel’s convenience store sites.
Clinton City Manager Roger Houck said that Weigel’s had plans earlier to put a second Clinton store on that site, but gave that up when the Tennessee Department of Transportation declined Weigel’s request for a cut-through on Seivers Boulevard so traffic could access the store from both sides of the highway.