New plans emerging for building at 120 East State Street in Kennett Square
● By Steven Hoffman
The potential new owner of a building at 120 East State Street is asking Kennett Square Borough Council to consider an economic development liquor license application that would allow for the opening of a full-service restaurant at the long-vacant building.
Mike Scali, an attorney who is interested in purchasing the building to open a restaurant, and his attorney, William J. Shehwen III, made the request at the Feb. 16 council meeting.
Kennett Square Borough Council president Dan Maffei noted during the discussion that borough council’s role would simply be to sign off on the submission of the application. It will be up to the state’s Liquor Control Board to actually approve the application and grant the liquor license.
Scali and Shehwen explained that obtaining a liquor license is an essential part of the plans to open a restaurant. The liquor license that is being applied for would be completely non-transferable, and could not be sold to a different owner of the same business or sold to someone and be used at any other property.
Kennett Square Borough Council is expected to consider a resolution regarding the application at an upcoming meeting on Monday, March 7.
The building at 120 East State Street was once the home of the Kennett Cafe, but has long been shuttered. Restaurateur Jack McFadden purchased the building nearly a decade ago and undertook a large-scale renovation of the building with plans to open an upscale restaurant. McFadden worked with the borough to secure a $500,000 economic development loan from the state. Plans for the building evolved over time, with McFadden planning a wine bar and a tapas restaurant at various times, but he never opened any business at the location.
According to a source with knowledge of the situation , the sale of the building from McFadden to Scali is still pending. An agreement of sale has been in place on the property since last December, according to the source.