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What may be coming to Gainesville restaurant site first occupied by Shoney’s
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E-Gyu Revolving Sushi & BBQ is planning a restaurant serving Asian dishes at a location once occupied by Shoney's off Jesse Jewell Parkway in Gainesville. - photo by Jeff Gill

Plans for a Korean barbecue restaurant in an old Shoney’s restaurant in Gainesville have fallen through, but another restaurant with Asian dishes may be on the way.

E-Gyu Revolving Sushi & BBQ, which has a restaurant in Buford, is planning to take over the site, which was more recently occupied by a Chinese restaurant, Hong Kong King Buffet.

The property is at 635 Jesse Jewell Parkway, between McDonald’s and Dunkin’ and just south of Queen City Parkway.

“A land development plan is in the review process to renovate the site and building,” said Matt Tate, Gainesville’s deputy director of community and economic development.

A site plan shows a 6,420-square-foot building surrounded on all sides by parking.

Restaurant officials couldn’t be reached for comment.

The restaurant’s website says E-Gyu has a “sophisticated, yet welcoming” atmosphere “in which we create exceptional sushi and Japanese selection, along with special yakiniku BBQ selections.”

Originally, a developer had planned a $1.4 million transformation of the site into a K-Plate Korean barbecue restaurant.

Gainesville City Council voted in January 2021 to OK $71,500 in tax allocation district funding to help with funding for the project. The business was seeking $200,000.

A tax allocation district is an area where officials hope to improve properties deemed as “blighted” by creating a public fund to help incentivize improvements. Higher property taxes that result from improved properties go into the fund for a certain period of time and are used for public improvements.

K-Plate later “decided to not proceed with the project at this location,” Tate said.

“There have been no other details provided at this time,” he said in an email.