Start on the corner of Crown and Chapel Streets and proceed towards the New Haven green. If you keep your eyes and focus situated to the left, you will notice the once-deserted old New Haven “mall” is now bustling with some sort of activity. In the tall glass windows—that I believe at one point may have been Macy’s display windows—you will see signs that read “Coming Soon”…”Buffalo Wild Wings.” Is your interest piqued yet?

No? Ok, well continue down Church Street — crossing Chapel, Elm, Wall and Grove Streets (where the street finally becomes Whitney Avenue). Again, another empty store/shop/restaurant front — except this time, the place hasn’t been deserted for long; in fact, it’s the former resting spot of Sandra’s — once touted as New Haven’s premiere soul food restaurant; and yet again, there is another sign, except this one reads “Moe’s Southwest Grill.”

So essentially, probably within less than a mile of each other and on the same exact street (although they bear different names), there are two “chain” restaurants being thrown into the mix of “downtown” New Haven. Is New Haven starting to lose its unique and eclectic flare or is this a positive change? Perhaps consumers (i.e. Yale students) are getting tired of the varied Thai and Sushi restaurants around town and would rather more traditional, Americanized food. –Thameka Thompson