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McDonald's Expansion Pushing Rainbow Out 

click to enlarge street08_donut_100.jpg

Get 'em before they're gone, folks. Rainbow Donuts is moving.

The independently owned Broad Street pastry-maker, located between the Science Museum of Virginia and the Boulevard, is a local favorite that's drawn devoted fans. But it's likely to close within the next several months to make way for an expansion of the McDonald's restaurant next door.

"I'm entertaining a lease with McDonald's on this property," says Jerry Moore, who owns the property as well as Moore Insurance Agency, which also will move if the deal goes through. "I've signed the lease with McDonald's and sent it off. They just haven't sent it back to me yet."

The McDonald's expansion is part of a region-wide sprucing-up at several of the chain's locations. Two stores in Ashland, one in Atlee and one at Virginia Center Commons, in addition to a location on Hull Street Road in Chesterfield County, are undergoing or have finished major reconstruction.

As Moore understands it, the project plans call for bulldozing the existing McDonald's, relocating it in the center of the expanded property and increasing the store's parking to accommodate the new facility.

Meanwhile, Rainbow Donuts' future is uncertain.

"We've been looking at a few places around here," says owner Choeu Yam, who opened his store in 1992 where McDonald's stands now. The doughnut shop moved to its current location in 1998, and Yam says getting the boot yet again by a burger-hawking clown tastes about as good as cold fries: "Kinda [old], you know?"

Meanwhile, Moore says he's trying to find new a Broad Street location for his own business, in addition to helping his other tenants, including an auto detailing shop. His job may be made easier by conversations he says he's recently had with Yam.

"My understanding is — he's been doing this for [15] years, seven days a week," Moore says — "Choeu indicated that he may just take some time off." S

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