Monday afternoon, Jeff Poe, who owns all the Wendy’s stores in southeast New Mexico and Lubbock, Texas, walked across the cordoned off parking lot at the Wendy’s restaurant in Hobbs.
He carried a hammer in his hand as he talked about the extensive remodel of the restaurant he owns at the corner of Sanger and Turner.
It was unclear what he had been doing with the hammer, but it was clear that he was comfortable holding it.
“This is the only job I’ve ever had,” he said. “I started 24 years ago.”
“And he worked his way up until he owns all these stores,” Grady Johnson, owner of Terraton Construction said. “We’ve done a lot of work on these stores over the years.”
A look through one of the windows that now has no glass in it and had been covered with plywood since last week, when the remodel started, revealed one man laying laminated flooring, another spreading grout and then cleaning the surface with a wet sponge.
New ceramic tiles, in an off white color that provides a shiny clean look marched half way up the side walls, and new sheet-rock near what will be the front of the store was ready to be taped and bedded.
Hobbs’ Wendy’s remodel is part of the parent company’s re-imaging of all its stores. The re-imaging includes new signage and aesthetic changes to the parking area and the entrance to the store.
The concrete surface that leads to the drive-through window is obviously new.
“We’ve done a lot business in this location,” Poe said. “And we want the best for our customers.”
Among the best that the remodeled Wendy’s will offer is WiFi connectivity and a television that will probably be tuned most of the time to the NFL network, but which can be changed at the request of customers, particularly children, who may prefer something else.
“Of course, if there is breaking news, we’ll tune in to that,” Poe said.
In addition, the new dining room will sport an electric fireplace that will provide ambiance that the previous dining room lacked.
Poe said the work being done on Wendy’s Hobbs’ restaurant is being done by local contractors like Terraton Construction.
“This is expensive work,” Poe said. “About a half million dollars worth and we want to keep it in the community.”
Although the exterior remodel will not be complete for two to three weeks, Johnson said he expects his workmen to be through with the interior by the end of this week.
“The dining room will be open by the end of this week,” Poe said. “And we’ll be looking for our loyal customers from the past as well as new customers. We’re adding two items to the menu, chicken strips and fresh baked cookies, and the prices will stay basically the same.”