A couple of weeks ago it was Smashburger, and now Panera is the latest chain to invade Brooklyn. Crain’s reports that the Au Bon Pain alternative will open its first store in the spring, at 345 Adams Street, a block from Borough Hall and Fulton Street. Believe it or not, the chain has yet to open in Manhattan, but across the bridge, we’re told that Chipotle will open two new stores a couple of blocks from each other on December 13 — one at 1379 Avenue of the Americas and 56th Street, and the other at 235 West 56th at Eighth Avenue.
Is all of this cause for concern? Well, the November issue of City Limits magazine includes a package on the perilous state of small businesses in our fair city. It tells us what we already know (that chain stores are usurping mom and pops everywhere from Manhattan to Bay Ridge), but it’s worth a read.