Former Applebee's property under contract to Club Car Wash

Club Car Wash has a third Springfield location in the works, this time at the site of the former Applebee’s Bar & Grill on Veterans Parkway.

“I can confirm they have it under contract to purchase but it has not closed yet,” said Blake Pryor, a broker with Coldwell Banker Commercial Devonshire Realty, who represents the property owner.

According to Sangamon County tax records, the real estate is owned by an out-of-state LLC that purchased the property in July 2016 for $2.2 million. It was previously leased to The Bloomin’ Apple, LLC, an Applebee’s franchisee based out of South Carolina.

After the Applebee’s closed suddenly in March 2022, Pryor said, “We were hired to lease the property, but selling it ultimately made the most sense, based on the inquiries we received.” He said the owner decided to entertain offers to purchase after multiple interested parties expressed interest in buying the building, rather than leasing.

Last fall, the property was rezoned from S-2 to B-1 to accommodate a car wash, but Pryor said that delays in the building permit process and a “logjam” from Club Car Wash, which has multiple other sites nationwide under contract at the same time, has delayed the closing.

“If there are no further delays or setbacks, I expect a May 2023 closing,” said Pryor.

Club Car Wash opened its first two Springfield locations in 2021, starting with 1001 Lincolnshire Blvd., just north of the Sixth Street Walmart. Later that year, a location at 2605 N. Dirksen Parkway opened, after the company extensively renovated the site of the former Green Hyundai dealership.

Club Car Wash, based in Columbia, Missouri, was founded in 2006 as Tiger Express Car Wash and rebranded in 2019. In 2022, Club Car Wash partnered with Rapid Express Car Wash and acquired Speedy Splash Carwash, rebranding those locations under the Club Car Wash name.

The company has expanded aggressively in recent years, opening new locations in Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Iowa, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Arkansas, Wisconsin and Texas. Club Car Wash currently operates more than 100 locations nationwide and “has plans to scale rapidly into Colorado, Kentucky and Tennessee through acquisitions and new development,” according to the company’s website.

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