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Jimmy John’s switches focus to Rock Falls

Franchise owner says store could be open in early 2014

Published: Saturday, Aug. 24, 2013 1:15 a.m. CST • Updated: Saturday, Aug. 24, 2013 2:07 a.m. CST

STERLING – For now, Sterling isn’t getting a Jimmy John’s Gourmet Sandwiches location.

Franchise owner Li Arellano will turn his focus to Rock Falls after trying to reach an agreement with Sterling for more than 6 months, he said.

The sticking point was Sterling’s city code, which. Arellano said. would require him to spend $50,000 to meet design standards for the location he had targeted: the former Auto Store, 2402 E. Lincolnway, across the street from Arthur’s Garden Deli and near McDonald’s and Subway.

The Rock Falls location could be on First Avenue, which would allow for delivery to nearly half of Sterling, including CGH Medical Center and Sterling High School, Arellano said.

Several locations in Rock Falls have already been approved by the Jimmy John’s corporate office. Now Arellano is working on pricing and on addressing anything required by Rock Falls city code, which, he said, is similar to what he has experienced in Dixon.

Arellano owns the Dixon Jimmy John’s location, which celebrated its 5-year anniversary May 28.

The Rock Falls location could be finalized next month, Arellano said, and construction could begin this year. If all goes as planned, the new location could be open in early 2014.

Arellano hasn’t ruled out a Sterling location. If he sees a large portion of his business coming from north of the river, he’ll look again into a Sterling location, he said.

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