Burger Week II: Blanc Burger Bailing on Westport, Plaza Bound?

The word on the street: that wildly successful Blanc Burger + Bottles in Westport may be poised to bid adieu to the midtown party zone…

Nothing official, mind you, but insiders are saying that for any number of imaginable and/or unimaginable reasons, Blanc – which recently added a second location in South Leawood at Mission Farms – is looking into a possible exit strategy from Westport.

*** There was the shooting death in Westport late last year of a 24 year-old Leawood woman.

*** The warm weather, wee hours throngs of urban youth that give pause to white bread partiers.

*** The ongoing exodus of retail businesses that have folded or migrated to hoods like Brookside.

*** Oh and three words that strike fear into the hearts of huddled, befuddled masses; crime, crime & crime

Then there are the rumors of Blanc being less than enamored with its tenant/landlord relationship.

The $64 million question: where might Blanc bolt?

One possibility: Uno Chicago Grill at 4710 Jefferson on the Country Club Plaza.

Uno’s Plaza manager Roy says the eatery’s lease is up in November.

There’s more…

An architect’s rendering of the Plaza Uno’s “exterior elevation” shows Blanc’s logo back lit in orange. And it retains the building’s distinctive brick archways.

Will an actual deal go down? Stay tuned.

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6 Responses to Burger Week II: Blanc Burger Bailing on Westport, Plaza Bound?

  1. Anonymous says:

    I have to first time here; I don’t see where this bad rap for Westport comes from. Maybe eight years ago it’s justified. Sure it’s an entertainment district and revelry and the occasional incident comes with the territory, but jesus. I feel if it wasnt so close in proximity to the plaza and it’s lily white image it wouldnt yield this kind of outlook. I guess people just need a bad guy.

  2. Anonymous says:

    To quote RODNEY KING, “why can’t we all just get along?” No doubt the lily-white suburbanites feel threatened by groups of black, latino or oriental youth in Westport and on The Plaza. I can’t say that I blame them in some, but not all cases. When you come upon a group of 4 or more youths dressed in matching attire right out of hip-hop central casting you think “gang”. I’m sure in some cases these young men and women mean no harm and take some joy and pride in scaring “whitey”. Since people vote with their wallets they will go to places where they feel safe and secure. No amount of Police presence will diminish that fear since it takes less then 7 seconds to grab a purse, stab someone or fire a round or three or four. Until law enforcement, business associations and the urban communities can come to some sort of agreement about where to draw the line without the ACLU or City Council getting involved we are going to continue to see a de-evolution in Westport and on The Plaza. We all have a stake in the outcome and all have to be willing to make some compromises for the greater good; otherwise in 10 years South Kansas City will stretch to the Oklahoma border. I see no reason why youth, under the age of 18, other than those variously employed in the district(s) should not have to be accompanied by a parent or LEGAL GUARDIAN after 10 PM in those, or any areas for that matter. That’s just reponsible behavior consistent with good parenting or guardianship.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Well said sir; but my point is that I don’t think wesport is like that anymore, it used to be. Go to Harrys, McCoys, Blanc, The Foundry; I’m saying the “Westport is thuggish” is a bandwagon attitude that was true eight years ago but not anymore. I mean with exceptions of course, but nothing like back then. I just think the mentality still lingers becase some people, especially JOCOS, still think it’s cool to bash Westport. See em at Shark Bar I guess.

    For the record; after 10 years, I’ve witnessed more incidents on the plaza than in Westport.

  4. Anonymous says:

    That sucks.

  5. Anonymous says:

    While I am not a big fan of the place, I think the P&L is more to blame for the decline of Westport than whitey’s fear of scary looking non-whities.

    The truth is that Westport is just not that hip anymore. Harry’s and McCoy’s not withstanding, the rest of the clubs there draw a constant crowd of cheesedicks, white trash, binge drinking frat boys and underage urban gawkers.

    Sorry, but it just doesn’t make for an appealing night out. Add to that the constant dui checkpoints (read: the city getting it’s cut and you have a recipe for people taking their entertainment dollars elsewhere.

    What possible reason would someone who lives in JOCO have to drive/cab down to Westport when comparable or better eating and drinking establishments are just blocks away and newer, shinier destination venues are available downtown?

    I think areas like Westport should stop blaming Johnson County for their problems. If nobody wants what you’re selling, then you better change what you’re selling or go out of business. I guess blanc burger figured that out.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Maybe it’s as simple as the fact that Blanc is consistently packed and they need a bigger space.

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