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It was quick work recently when bulldozers plowed down the existing Arby’s at the corner of Elm Hill Pike and Donelson Pike. The restaurant stood empty for a year after the gas water heater blew up and destroyed the interior. Owners plan to build a bigger and better restaurant during the first quarter of 2021. PHOTO COURTESY OF BOB KUSEK

Residents noticed the Arby’s restaurant at the corner of Elm Pike and Donelson recently torn down and wondered what will replace it.

It will be another “bigger and better” Arby’s, according to Stan Davis, general manager of the Hermitage Arby’s.

“The gas water heater exploded about a year ago and demolished the inside,” said Davis. “Thankfully, nobody was in there and hurt.”

Davis said the rebuild will start soon, and the plan is for a new model store footprint. He predicted a tentative April or May reopening, depending on the weather.

The restaurant is in District 15 Nashville Metro Councilman Jeff Syracuse’s jurisdiction.

“That Arby’s had a couple of accidents and has been repaired twice in the past five years,” he said. “Instead of repairing it for the third time, they are going to rebuild.”

Syracuse said the upgrade ties in with the nearby Wendy’s renovation.

“I think in 2020, some businesses took the opportunity to reinvest in themselves to come back in 2021 even better,” he said.

Syracuse said the Arby’s sat there more than a year to deal with insurance and other details.

“They reached out to me to let me know they are rebuilding,” he said.

The Wendy’s closed temporarily Jan. 10 while renovation takes place and is targeted to reopen in a few weeks.

Syracuse surmised both Arby’s and Wendy’s planned to beef up their window delivery capabilities to coincide with current and potential future high demand.

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