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The new Pizza Hut Wing Street restaurant is nearly completed. It will be open Dec. 22. Blake Carter/photographer

By Benjamin Whitener
Staff reporter

Bad weather and construction problems have caused a delay in the opening of the brand new Pizza Hut Wing Street on south Main.

It was supposed to open in November. The tentative opening date has been moved to Dec. 22. Stan Stover, general contractor, said, “October was one of the wettest and coldest in Kansas history.” The cold and rain were the cause of many of the setbacks.

Another major reason for the delay is when the construction began. Phil Berger, area general manager, said they got started late on the construction.

The new Wing Street has one last big hurdle to get over. Berger said, “The biggest thing left is demolishing the old building and getting the new parking lot ready.” The site of the old building is the location of the new parking lot. Berger said it would take about two weeks to do the work as long as the weather is cooperative. Demolition of the old Pizza Hut located on south Main began Dec. 3.

Until the new building is ready, the only location in operation is the drive-thru delivery Pizza Hut, located at 2020 E. Ninth Ave.

Berger said they need about 60 new employees to properly run the restaurant. He said they have already received 100 applications for the positions.

The new Wing Street has a main dining room, a party room and a bar. Berger said they have applied for a liquor license.

The restaurant will have 10 televisions. One television will be in the main entry way, two in the bar, one in the party room and six in the main dining room. With a sports theme for the restaurant, most of the televisions will be tuned to sports stations.

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Demolition of the old Pizza Hut began Dec. 3. It was removed in order to make room for the parking lot of the new Pizza Hut Wing Street. Benjamin Whitener/photographer

Berger said he wants people to feel like they can come in and relax when the restaurant opens. “It’ll be like the hometown hangout,” he said.

Most Pizza Huts serve wings already. The difference for Wing Street is the type of wings. Jeff Hettenbach, general manager of Ark City Wing Street, said the wings are deep fried instead of baked like regular Pizza Hut wings. “They’re better quality” he said. The Winfield location will be one of only two locations in Cowley County to have the fried wings. Hettenbach said the nearest place to get fried wings, other than Winfield or Arkansas City, is Wichita.

Wing Street will also serve pastas, sandwiches, breadsticks and pizza.

Benjamin Whitener is a junior majoring in digital arts. You may e-mail him at Benjamin.whitener@sckans.edu.