Lehigh Valley

Two new Allentown arena eateries announced

Tim Horton, Crust restaurants will be at PPL Center.

ALLENTOWN, Pa. - Allentown's new hockey arena will feature two more new restaurants when it opens this September.

At this Wednesday's Allentown Neighborhood Improvement Zone Development Authority meeting officials unveiled Tim Hortons and Crust as the two incoming eateries to be added to the growing list of businesses in the downtown sporting complex.

Tim Hortons, a multinational restaurant franchise named after former professional hockey player Miles "Tim" Hortons, is known for their coffee and baked goods.

"It's a cross between a Panera Bread and Dunkin Donuts" said Rob Brooks, a co-owner of the Phantoms minor league hockey team that will occupy the Allentown complex. "I think we all believe this is a great fit for the new development."

The restaurant will have a casual atmosphere featuring soft seating and fireplaces on both sides

"It's a great place if you want to have a quick meeting over coffee" said Brooks.

The Tim Hortons restaurant will replace a planned Phantoms team store in the building design, with several other merchandise distributors instead to be placed throughout the arena.

Crust, the second eatery addition, will be a 3,200 square foot wood-fire pizza restaurant that, according to Brooks, will have a very modern design.

"It's got a very edgy urban modern feel," he said, including "exposed brick [and a] steel mezzanine."

"The food in that type of oven is just unbelievable," added Brooks. "We thought it was great for the arena."

This unveiling comes on the heels of last week's announcement that a Chickie's & Pete's restaurant would also be featured in the arena.

The franchise, widely known for their crab fries, will join the complex in the form of an 8,000 square foot dining facility featuring street access, two bars and even a Service Electric broadcast booth for pregame shows and other programs. 

"It really has a nice image when you walk in" said Brooks. "It just really gives you a classic saloon look."

The restaurant will have a total capacity of 275 with additional seating for 50 outside. According to Brooks this will allow customers to come and dine in a timely fashion.

 "One thing Chickie's and Pete's really prides themselves is in quick delivery" said Brooks.

"Sounds exciting to me" said ANIZDA Chairman Sy Traub.

The funding for these restaurants was made possible by a previously approved $4 million bond granted by the board.

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