Main St. Cafe, 48 N. Main St. in Hartford, should be
opening within the next 30-60 days. That’s according to
the new business’s owner Vicente Flores. Monday night
the city’s Plan Commission approved the businesses sign
for the location, which had been vacant for around 10
years and was the former home of a Chinese restaurant.
Flores said the business will offer a variety of food.
HARTFORD — Another
new business will soon open in the city’s downtown and
fill another of the area’s vacant storefronts.
Main Street Cafe owner Vicente Flores said he hopes to
open the new downtown restaurant at 48 N. Main St.
sometime within the next 30 to 60 days. The looming
opening of the new business seems to grant more credence
to Mayor Tim Michalak’s August prediction that “within
12-18 months we are not going to have an empty
storefront in the downtown.”
At the city’s Monday night Plan Commission meeting some
commissioners said they believed the building has been
vacant for around 10-12 years.
“I think it’s a good location and the city’s downtown is
certainly making some improvements,” Flores said. “I
have another business in the Janesville area and we’re
hoping this one can be successful too.”
Simultaneously, work is continuing on construction of
the 82-unit apartment building (Rincon 225) downtown,
about a block away from the Main Street Cafe’s location.
Flores said he doesn’t know the exact date for opening
the new business because he has had to complete a great
deal of renovation inside the building to change it from
what was once a Chinese restaurant to a more typical
one. He also has other details to finalize. On Monday
night, however, the commission did approve his proposal
for a sign on the front of the business.
The sign is above the main entrance and meets all of the
city’s sign regulations, but Michalak, who chairs the
commission, expressed disappointment that Flores had
posted the sign before receiving city approval.
“He has been very cooperative. He just did not know the
process and nothing was done intentionally,” said City
Planner Justin Drew.
The fee for the sign would normally be about $115, and
could have been doubled because of the violation. But
Drew said he didn’t see the need to impose a penalty.
“We have done that a couple of times, generally we just
work to get the owner to comply, but if they don’t
that’s when we would double it,” Drew said.
He said if he had it to do over he would have asked
Flores to remove the sign until he received final city
“We’re going to have Mexican, American food. We’re going
to offer a variety,” Flores said. “We’re really looking
forward to opening. We just have a few more things to
finish because we had to replace the ceilings and the
floors and some other things too.”