Empty Restaurants in Montgomery Cause Some to Eat in Prattville

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By Jessica Gertler

In the last few years, a handful of chain restaurants have closed shop, and some have moved or stayed opened in Prattville. CBS 8 News finds out why they're leaving the capitol city, and if they'll ever come back.

In the last several years, many chain restaurants in Montgomery have closed including Hooters, Macaroni Grill and Steak N' Shake.

Some of the restaurants that have shut their doors, like McAlister's and Logan's, have stayed open or relocated to Prattville.

"Three of them I normally go to!" says Montgomery resident Craig Lowery. "Logan's is one. Macaroni Grill. They're closed everywhere!"

So what's to blame?

"I think people have gotten tired of the hustle and bustle of Montgomery. They're tired of the traffic and wrecks on I-85. To me, this is more of a homey feel," says Prattville resident Jane Aldridge.

"The town needs to do something about it! I mean, that's where it is at right there. The town needs to say, 'We need to develop this better,'" says Lowery.

But Montgomery Mayor Todd Strange says the city isn't at fault.

"In real estate you say location, location, location. Some of the ones that we just talked about were under the road if you will," he says.

Strange says he's working to recruit more chain restaurants to the city. In fact, one just opened up.

Taziki's Mediterranean Cafe Manager Michael Ivy says he looked around the River Region, but Montgomery caught his eye.

" We did a lot of research on Montgomery, and we're really excited about coming here," he says.

Strange says once the entire Montgomery Mall is up and running again, these empty store fronts should see life again.

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