DU QUOIN — The city of Du Quoin will be getting a new Taco Bell, to be built in the Southtowne Shopping mall off North Illinois 51.
The new construction could start within a month and would take six to nine months to complete, Mayor Guy H. Alongi said. Ideally, the fast food Mexican chain would be ready in time for the 2017 Du Quoin State Fair (Aug. 25 to Sept. 4), Alongi said.
At its meeting Monday night, the city council approved a plat map for the construction of the restaurant, which will be adjacent to the Verizon store.
The new construction will cost about $1.2 million to $1.3 million and occupy about 2,500 square feet, Alongi said. The new Taco Bell will employ about 18 to 30 people working full- and part-time, Alongi said.
The restaurant is owned by John Moroney, who also owns a Taco Bell in Carbondale, Alongi said. Alongi said Southtowne Shopping Center's owner arranged the deal for Moroney to bring the restaurant to town.
He said Moroney did not want any incentives for establishing the business in the city.
“We think it’s a good fit for Du Quoin,” Alongi said. “I think it’d be a successful business.”
Alongi said that the Taco Bell restaurant was the chain most recommended by people who responded to one of his Facebook posts a while ago about what they'd like to see in the city.
The city once had a Taco Johns restaurant, which is now closed.