Partners bringing Subway to Marion

Workers with Hett Construction bring down the canopy earlier this monthly that was part of the former Marion Auto Mart Business at 1111 E. Main St. in Marion. The task was a first step in preparation for developing the building into a new Subway restaurant.A new Subway Restaurant is opening in Marion this spring and, according to Greg Carlson, one of the partners, it?s exciting and nerve-racking at the same time.

Whenever a new business starts up, he said, there is always concern about how it will be accepted in the community, but from the comments in town it should be a welcomed addition.

?We are not wanting to infringe on anybody,? he said, ?and we aren?t here to run anybody out of business.

?We just saw a need for something and thought Subway was a good choice.?

The other partners are Jessica Laurin, Mitch Carlson and Linda Carlson, Greg said. Mitch?s son, Chase, will be the restaurant manager.

The idea for a Subway franchise started with Laurin, who was interested in this type of business.

Greg Carlson said he thought a Subway would be a good idea and so they all ?pooled their heads together? and thought it was a great idea.

?I was also envious about having a Subway (in Marion) because we have so many functions going on around here,? he said.

With so many sporting events and other activities, he said he believed Marion needed a fast food restaurant like Subway.

In the near future, Carlson said, he and wife Linda will travel to Milford, Conn., for two weeks of training.

Fifty percent of the training is in class and the other 50 percent is in-store training, according to a Subway official.

?We have also taken more than 25 tests online so far,? he added.

The tests have ranged from keeping a restaurant clean to dealing with angry customers.

?It?s also the first time we have been involved in a franchise,? he said.

Some of the other fast food franchises were too high priced and out of reach, Carlson said.

Plans are already underway to fix up the former Auto Mart store at 1111 E. Main St.

About three years ago, Carlson said his father, Gary, also used the building for a television and satellite business.

?We have owned the building for about seven years,? he said.

After tearing down the canopy during the first of February, the next step will be to get the building finished.

?We haven?t even started on the plumbing, but the heating and air conditioning are completed,? Carlson said.

In addition to fixing up the building, there is also training and hiring.

?Chase has a lot of training to do as the manager, too,? he said.

Roger Holter, city administrator and economic development director, said the new Subway is a ?terrific? addition to the community.

?We are excited about it because of the brand standards that a franchise company brings,? he said. ?We are equally excited the owning partnership has some tremendous civic leaders in our community.?

The new Subway is also seen as complementing the hours of operation that Marion County Hardware will have?both with extended hours of operation.

Carlson said he would like to see Subway open until 9 p.m. or 10 p.m.

According to Holter, when the hardware store opens in March, its hours will be until 9 p.m., except on Sundays until 8 p.m.

Another plus regarding both new businesses is that they are filling vacant buildings in the Marion community.

?We are nervous, but hoping the community will support us,? Carlson said.

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