A retail property on Schomburg Road in north Columbus has changed ownership, with the area’s Subway franchisee planning to locate the chain’s new “Fresh Forward” design at the location.
The acre of land at 7590 Schomburg Road, adjacent to the Publix-anchored Parkway Centre shopping center, was purchased by BBT Properties LLC on Nov. 14, city records show, with the company owned by Robby and Kim Jones paying $864,000.
The land and 46,174-square-foot building on it was acquired from EDMAR LLC, which is owned by Columbus businessman Ed Miller, who with his wife, Marie, operate the two Bruster’s Real Ice Cream stores in Columbus and a satellite outlet on Fort Benning. The Millers also have a Wingstop eatery at 2528 Weems Road.
“I did own that building and Robby bought it from me with the understanding that he was going to put in a Subway and I would close my business down,” said Miller, who shuttered the Schomburg Road Bruster’s in mid-November as the property sale took place.
The location also is home to a Lepoma’s Pizzeria, which expanded there last year from its existing store in the Kitten Lake area of Midland. A Synovus bank drive-thru also was installed in the parking lot.
Through the years, aside from Bruster’s, the Schomburg property also has been home to Nathan’s Famous Hotdogs, Hungry Howie’s Pizza and Continental Cleaners.
“I did land the Lepoma’s in there before all of that took place,” Miller said of the sale. “Basically, it was a situation where the land and the building was worth somewhat more than the business. The business was profitable, certainly. It wasn’t a matter of it losing money or anything like that. But it was a real estate move. Sometimes you have to take them when you get them.”
The new Subway with the “Fresh Forward” design, which is the latest by the company founded more than 50 years ago, is expected to open in March at 7590 Schomburg Road. Aimed at improving the customer experience, elements include brighter and bolder décor, digital menu boards, curated music and the chain’s new logo.
The location will have a drive-thru window, just as the Bruster’s ice cream store did before it. Third-party delivery will be available, while a pre-order pickup area for those using the Subway app also will be in place. Seating areas also will include USB charging ports to go along with the free Wi-Fi.
Robby and Kim Jones have been franchise owners with Subway since 1986, ultimately bringing their sons Brandon, Blake and Tyler into the Columbus-based business known as RJK & Sons. The family operates 34 Subway stores in southwest Georgia, some as far away as Albany.
The departure of the Bruster’s store on Schomburg Road will leave only three in the market, those owned by Miller on Whittlesey Road and Macon Road, along with the Fort Benning satellite location. The lone Bruster’s in Phenix City, not operated by Miller, shut its doors last week, with its marquee sign off U.S. Hwy. 280 thanking customers for their patronage over the last 12 years.