Cheesecake Factory looks to move to Harborplace Chain would replace Nickel City Grill

November 03, 1995|By Edward Gunts | Edward Gunts,SUN STAFF

The Cheesecake Factory, a national chain that plans to add 13 restaurants by the end of 1997, is negotiating to set up its

first Baltimore operation in the Pratt Street pavilion of Harborplace.

Representatives of Rouse Co., which owns Harborplace, cautioned that no lease has been signed.

But the Board of Liquor License Commissioners for Baltimore City last week approved a request from the California-based restaurateur to take over the license for the space occupied until recently by the Nickel City Grill, a restaurant that closed last month.

Yesterday, Cheesecake Factory representatives appeared before Baltimore's Architectural Review Board to present plans for the restaurant. If they reach a lease agreement, they said, the restaurant would open next spring in the 6,200-square-foot, first-level space.

Rick McCormack, director of design, said the restaurant would have a bar and bakery, and seating for up to 348 people.

He said the Cheesecake Factory would invest more than $2 million in renovations and estimated that the restaurant would employ 150 people.

The Cheesecake Factory was founded 20 years ago in Southern California by David Overton and his family. Their first restaurant was in Beverly Hills.

In addition to dispensing 40 different kinds of cheesecake and other desserts, it features salads, pastas, pizzas, steaks, seafood and other fare.

The Cheesecake Factory became a publicly traded company two years ago and now has 13 restaurants, including locations in Bethesda and Chevy Chase.

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