Bobby G’s owner blames MARTA, parking and Section 8 Housing for shuttering his business

Caleb J. Spivakrestaurants113 Comments

Bobby G's Chicago Eatery ~ what now atlanta

Chicago-style eatery closes at Lindbergh City Center.

Bobby G’s Chicago Eatery has closed in Buckhead.

Glenn Kaas, owner of the Chicago-style quick-serve restaurant, shuttered the Lindbergh franchise Saturday, August 6.

Bobby G’s first opened its Lindbergh City Center location in January, 2010.

Kaas told What Now Atlanta on a trip to the restaurant Saturday he’ll go back to being a pharmacist, the job he held before opening Bobby G’s.

“Owning a restaurant was always my dream,” Kaas said.

A dream with start-up costs totaling around $336,000, according to the franchiser’s website. Monies that are still being paid back in loans, according to Kaas.

As for closing, well it’s mainly MARTA’s fault, he said. MARTA, who owns the complex where Bobby G’s is located, has made parking at the development next to impossible — unless you’re willing to pay for it and most are not.

We experienced it ourselves on a trip Saturday to get this story as Lanier Parking Solutions (hired by MARTA to manage the property) tried to ticket us at an “out of order” meter on the street directly outside the restaurant (good looks and bribes got us out of a ticket).

There are, however, parking decks nearby that allow restaurants to issue patrons validation.

“People don’t like parking decks,” Kaas said. And interestingly enough, Taco Maco, located across the street from Bobby G’s, has been given an extra hour parking for their patrons.

Other issues include apartments that were recently turned into Section 8 Housing, according to Kaas.

“We always received a lot of compliments on our food but most of the new residents can’t afford it.”

These all sound like logical problems, but maybe the food just sucked.

After all, we interviewed Kaas around lunchtime and even on an empty stomach, bolted from there to find something that looked more edible.

It was pretty uncomfortable in the restaurant also, considering the A.C. went out the week before.

“When the air conditioning blew-out, we took that as validation to get the hell out of here.”

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Caleb J. SpivakBobby G’s owner blames MARTA, parking and Section 8 Housing for shuttering his business

113 Comments on “Bobby G’s owner blames MARTA, parking and Section 8 Housing for shuttering his business”

  1. Susan

    Hey Tina. I recommend you walk through my neighborhood and get to meet the “different races and faces” before you hop on your unicorn and fly over the rainbow in a contrail of pink glitter…

  2. Drewboo

    I stay in midtown near piedmont park – never see crime. I also have a place in eon – never see crime.

    When I lived in Home Park near Atlantic Station – I was afraid for my life. So, I dont understand why people are saying Lindbergh is ghetto when its not. The restaurants here all suck. No one comes to L-Station to eat. lmao

  3. StevenT

    I happen to work at an apartment community in the lIndbergh area and I can tell you that the majority of the apartment communities are over 90% occupied and STAY that way consistently. Also, they are majority high-end properties which DO NOT accept section 8. As for the person who said the area is overbuilt and “they could not give away these apartments”….the lindbergh apartment market is one of the most expensive in Atlanta. You will pay more to live here than Buckhead or Midtown. (Granted there arent too many high-end apartment communities in Midtown).
    I think the business owner opened in this area with dreams of catering only to affluent professionals, but lets be honest. Once you are inside the perimeter you are going to be serving every kind of person from every background. Period. If you don’t sell enough food and alcohol to pay your bills, that is the restaurant operator’s fault at the end of the day. You can blame it on a lack of traffic or a lack of quality in your food and service, but by all means you can NOT blame the customers you never had no matter who they are.

  4. David K.

    What apartments that are now “Section 8 housing?” That’s untrue. There might be communities nearby that accept vouchers (which I honestly don’t think is happening), but there are no total “Section 8″ apartment communities anywhere near this location.

  5. Whiterabbit

    I live in PT Hills and I quite often go to SIP for lunch with my girlfriend and even buy plants from Pikes by EON. I have never felt unsafe in the Lindburgh station area. I also think the area has a good mix of people. It is sure not ghetto in any way.

    The resturant in question just wasn’t the right fit and there are much better choices in the area at the same price point. I bet if a MOE’s or WIllies opened up there they would do great trade. Likewise a Meehans or similar neighborhood bar although Taco Mac is a very strong competitor with its beer selection.

  6. KenToo

    I am outdone by the comments I have read here. This article has turned into an opportunity to vent for many whom obviously have been harboring these sentiments for quite some time. The recklessness in which many spoke is digressive and the reason black and white people cannot mend this divisive line, I thought had begun to blur. But I guess I haven’t ever evaluated these types of matters by way of people that had their faces hidden.

    I want to point out one observation:
    1) All of the harshest, negative, and disrespectful choices of words here were said about black people. Regardless, of how uneducated or shallow many believed some comments or rebuttals were no derogatory words were used to describe the other (non-black) races. Race-talks need to happen on occasion, but the disdain in which many spoke of blacks should be an embarrassment. After review of this blog and the comments which posters would you say have the best character? If you had to group these posts or posters into two groups of people with good or bad character, who would most likely fill the good character basket?
    To everyone who posted their opinions in a respectable way kudos to you! Your parents taught you well.

    Sorry for being so didactic, but now lets turn lemons into lemonade; Question?

    Can race co-exist or intermingle here? What can local government do to prevent what was referred to as black people killing thriving areas? What do you expect from local government? Please be as specific as possible. Generalities are difficult to implement.

  7. ATL Station Resident

    I’m amazed by the comments I’ve read here… It’s no wonder our world is so full of vitriolic diatribes that perpetuate hate and angst as opposed to building bridges.

  8. AJ

    We stopped by there once when Taco Mac was full; we STOPPED and quickly turned around because they were rude and what we saw on the plates looked like crap. To say their failure is because of MARTA and Section 8 is laughable. Stick to what you know, Mr. Pharmacist.

  9. Dan

    Actually, they’re right on target. MARTA has destroyed this neighborhood by making it impossible to park. Why are places constantly closing there left and right? Because people will not pay for parking. Can’t MARTA figure it out? Firkin Pub will never reopen and it’s too bad because it was a classy place as was Bobby G’s, and unlike Taco Mac, which I can’t stand. It’s too bad because there is a need for classier places at Lindbergh, because so many people not only live there, but work there and pass through on their way to work. It’s outrageous there are so many vacant places there. Thanks MARTA for destroying the neighborhood.

  10. TravisinMidtown

    I’m black, educated (Bachelor’s from Emory and Masters from Ga Tech *GO JACKETS*)and I live in near the Lindbergh station and I’ve been to this restaurant and the food is really not that great so for the owner of this restaurant to have the audacity to put down people who may not be well off as he for the downfall of his business is mind-boggling and maybe he’s a closet racist and needed this forum to vent, GOOD RIDDANCE

  11. joe somerville

    I my 32 years of being in business in Atlanta I’ve met three smucks that really stand out – Paul Luna – the owner of Bobby G’s and and Boyacheck Deli owner — I met him in Roswell several years ago – he needs to go back to Chicago where he can be an ASS and not bother anyone – joe somerville

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