Town Plans for Doko Eatery

BLYTHEWOOD – While Town Council has shut one door on the Doko Restaurant, it has opened another, hoping to find an established restaurateur, agent or developer to construct the restaurant jointly with the Town in an area in the Town Park across from Town Hall.

The Town would pay for the entire project with a low-interest $900,000 loan from Santee Cooper and a $456,000 grant from Fairfield Electric Cooperative, for a total of $1.3 million. The good deal for the purchaser is that it would only have to pay back the amount of the Santee Cooper loan, interest on that loan ($18,000 a year, estimated at a total of $48,000), legal and other loan administration fees ($32,000) and other incidental expenses (about $71,000) for fill dirt, survey and architectural and engineering work. The total estimated closing costs for the purchaser to pay the Town in full for the restaurant would come to a little over $980,000 instead of the entire $1.3 million since the $456,000 grant would not have to be repaid.

“It’s a very good deal for the person or group who purchases the restaurant,” Ed Parler, the Town’s economic development consultant, told The Voice. “They will be getting much more than they paid for.”

According to Parler, the individual or group entering into the project with the Town would be required to build the depot-like design already prepared and provided by the Town. The 4,800-square-foot restaurant with a seating capacity of 185 will be targeted, according to Parler, with a polished casual atmosphere. The only other such restaurant in the area is under construction in Cobblestone’s Golf Club and is expected to open in the fall. According to a flyer distributed by the Town, the nearest competitors would be located in The Village at Sandhills, more than a 15-20 minute drive from Blythewood. Other like venues are located in downtown Columbia in the Vista area, about 16 miles south on Interstate 77. Anyone interested in this joint project with the Town can contact Parler at 803-754-0501, 803-509-1085 or email him at [email protected]