CHARLESTON, W.Va. — For the first time in more than 18 years, Yeager Airport will have a new food, beverage and retail vendor.
The airport board voted to approve Faber Coe and Gregg Inc, a New Jersey-based company with restaurants and souvenir shops nationwide in airports, hotels and train terminals, on Wednesday.
Yeager Airport Director Terry Sayre said the decision to replace longtime vendor Better Foods, which was recommended earlier in the month by the airport’s finance and marketing committees, was an economic decision. Sayre added the airport had a good relationship with Better Foods, owners of Gino’s and Tudor’s.
“Faber Coe decided to make a capital investment in the airport,” Sayre said. “That’s who the board went with. We are excited to have them here and I think they will be a great addition to our facility.”
The new vendor will begin $300,000 worth of renovations with two new restaurants and one gift shop immediately at Yeager Airport.
Dominique Ranieri, the Director of Marketing at the airport, said they are hoping to have all renovations done and fully opened by the end of this summer but it will be an overnight changeover.
A restaurant called Java Moon will be placed in the current location of Gino’s and Tudor’s in the pre-security area of the airport.
Ranieri said the location will be opened up a bit more and give a little more of a visual of the airport itself. Additional seating and items for purchase will be added on to Java Moon as well.
Sayre said having a unique restaurant at the airport will give them the opportunity to market it into the local community.
“Why would you come up here to eat at this current vendor if you could go on the East End and West Side and get the same food,” he said. “This will be something totally new up here and hopefully we can attract people from downtown and the surrounding community.”
The second new attraction in the investment by Faber Coe and Gregg Inc will be a restaurant called The Junction Charleston. The company has The Junction restaurants at airports across the country including The Junction Chicago.
Ranieri said this would be post-security and add a lot more seating in that area. She added that there will be more window space and the restaurant will have more grab-and-go options, healthier options but also a full menu.
All in all, Ranieri said the new vendor will bring a variety of options to their menus with local and national flavor.
“You’ll see seasonal changes and different offerings,” she said. “You’ll see the standards that you look for like hamburgers, chicken wraps, and salads.”
Ranieri said it was “to be determined” when the last day for Better Foods would be as it is up to the two vendors to work on the move.
Meetings between the two and the airport are scheduled for the coming weeks.
Better Foods just ended a 10-year lease with the airport on December 31 as Faber would sign a 7-year lease.