CARBONDALE -- Houlihan's restaurant is closing by end of business Tuesday, but co-owner Trace Brown said the space would not be vacant for long.

Although he did not get into details, Brown said in a news release that a new dining concept would replace Houlihan's by April 1.

Houlihan's opened in 2004.

"We have been very happy with the Houlihan’s franchise and love everything the brand stands for,” Brown said. “Given the changes that Carbondale has experienced, like many other towns across the country, we have decided to pursue a new restaurant endeavorwith different pricing, menus and unit economics.

"The Browns and Houlihan’s staff are very thankful for the community support over the past nine years and hope the new restaurant is received equally as well.”

Houlihan's was the second restaurant opened at Reed Station Crossing by Brown and his father, Charlie Brown. The Brown family opened Golden Corral in 2004.

Hampton Inn, which opened in 2000, was the first business the family built at Reed Station Crossing. The Holiday Inn opened in 2008.

Reed Station Crossing, located at Reed Station Road and Illinois 13, also features a gas station and convenience store and an office building.

The Browns also plan to build a veterans' home near the intersection.

Trace Brown said he would release more information about the future of the Houlihan's space within a week.

dw.norris@thesouthern.com/618-351-5074

On Twitter: @DW_Norris_SI

(11) comments

ThinkAboutIt
ThinkAboutIt

Nice. I have gift certificates to the Carbondale Houlihans that were purchased through the Southern Illinoisan VERY recently. The expiration date was at the end of 2013. They had to have known they were thinking about closing when they ran the special.

SIUSaluki00
SIUSaluki00

Nobody eats at any of the Marion restaurants any more, they're always too crowded.......

SIUSaluki00
SIUSaluki00

Can't wait to try the new place!

scoresman
scoresman

Another casualty of the (Un)Affordable Care Act.

DeeJay
DeeJay

My wife and I went to Houlhan's once. It was not bad, but just another chain restaurant no different from O'Charley's or Applebees. We only go to those places because our kids like them. We try to find "mom and pop" types of places. If it looks like a hole in the wall, the place often has good food. Harbaugh's Cafe, Fat Patties, Itallian Village, Walt's Bennies, Mike's Drive-in, Family Pizza, Palace Pizzeria, Giralamos, Polar Whip...those places are more my speed.

ritzysmom
ritzysmom

I suspect the wineries serving meals now, too has taken a bite out of Houlihan's business as well. More food variety, better atmosphere, and wonderful views,. If you are going to spend so much money on a meal, wouldn't one rather see the vineyards and rolling hills than the back of a gas station next to the stuffed parking lot of Golden Corral, with a highway separating it from a strip mall and the Vitamin Factory?

ritzysmom
ritzysmom

Lots of broke college students in Carbondale, not a lot of money, as evidenced by the nearly dead mall and the WalMart SuperCenter downsizing their inventory. And Houlihan's is a half-mile further out than all of its comparable comperitors in Carbondale. And if people in Marion/Carterville/Herrin can get as good, or better, food in Marion without a 6-14 mile drive, they aren't going to Carbondale. Marion has the highway with a lot more people with bigger wallets stop by, and they have built up a lot more to do and see where Carbodale is still the empty hole it has been for the last 20+ years.

JItterBug
JItterBug

You are in la la land.

Marion is a nice place. A lot of SIU professors live there. Gotta a 17 street but I prefer the original in The Boro.

But if you know anything about business you would know that Carbondale has plenty to spend. The Students today pay upwards of $800 - $1,000 in rent. (Well there parents pay for it) The students have money and don't save it they spend it. Plus local and student population is 40k to 45k. Way way more than Marion.

Also, malls across America are struggling because online shopping. It's a trend nationwide not just specific to Carbondale.

Get over your little man syndrome Mom. Don't hate on C'dale just because not every TV is fixed on Fox News and the ladies don't cake the makeup on like Marion. lol

Droidfan
Droidfan

I live just west of Marion and often drive to Carbondale on a Friday night. I don't want to wait 45 minutes to get into a restaurant because all the Marion families are out with their kids. There's still a wait, but not nearly as bad. I don't know anyone from Carterville who would rather drive into Marion through all that road construction when they're only 10 minutes away from Carbondale anyway. Sounds like maybe you're one of the Marion snobs who thinks it really is the "hub of the universe."

JItterBug
JItterBug

Marion's population is far smaller when compared to Carbondale's student population.

Lot's mo money in C'dale.

Kathi
Kathi

Why dont these resturants come to Marion?
You can never get in one here, they are always booked!!
The money is in Marion.. The HWY is there.

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