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Roadside explores the back road and Main Streets of America. Our recipe for an American renaissance: Eat in diners, ride trains, shop on Main Street, put a porch on your house, live in a walkable community.

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Third Rail Diner
Third Rail Diner
Name: Third Rail Diner
Description:

Former Trolley Stop; Sub Express, Actual Food Diner.

See story here.


Type of Attraction: diner-prefab
City: Kingston
State: NY
diner builder: O'Mahony
Vintage: 1930s
preserved: 20
Olympic Diner
Olympic Diner
Name: Olympic Diner
Description:

Please share your experiences!


Type of Attraction: diner-prefab
City: Kingston
State: NY
diner builder: Undetermined
Credit: : Michael Engle
Olympic Diner
Olympic Diner
Name: Olympic Diner
Description:

Please share your experiences. 


Type of Attraction: diner-prefab
City: Mahopac
State: NY
diner builder: DeRaffele
Vintage: 1999
preserved: 100
Show more...

The Diners of DelMar

  • Nautilus Diner towers above

    By Randy Garbin / 2014-09-10 12:53:50
    Steve Efstathiou looks like a dead ringer for a young Telly Savalas, minus the lollipop. He even shares the late actor’s trademark intensity and sense of humor. Setting aside the Greek stereotyping is a hard thing to do in the diner business, though, because Greeks run so many large diners, and their stories all follow a similar path. 
    Read More
  • The Tastee Diners: Islands in a sea of development

    By Randy Garbin / 2014-09-10 12:52:31
    The Tastee Diner chain stands as one of the holdouts from the diner’s golden age that saw not only some of the greatest designs produced by the industry, but a fairly common practice of expansion before the dominance of the franchise. The current owner of the chain, Gene Wilkes, did not start it, but he did rescue it. 
    Read More
  • Frank’s bakes the cakes to take

    By Randy Garbin / 2014-09-10 12:47:45
    Nearly twenty years have passed since Frank and Linda Davis finally opened the doors of their diner. Talking to them, it seems that they have forty years of experience in it. Projects such as these all start out with the highest of hopes, but the even the best laid plans can never account for the twists and turns in a business with so many variables. 
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  • Doyle's Diner gets ready for the future

    By Randy Garbin / 2014-09-10 12:42:07
    Mike Doyle is all business, but he's not averse to a tugging your chain as he gets to know you. Trouble is, his expression doesn't change much when he does it. For those meeting him for the first time, this can knock you a little off balance.  "How much are you going to pay me for all this information?" The man barely cracks a smile as he asks, belying the suggestion of a jollier presence thanks to his full head of white hair and portly demeanor. If he grew a beard, he could make a great Santa. 
    Read More

Gaming the City

The City of Philadelphia recently elected a new mayor, Michael Nutter, who almost immediately after his inauguration announced his intention bring true design standards back to the city's development process. With an understanding and appreciation for the nature of the urban fabric Roadside hasn't seen since John Norquist ran Milwaukee, Mayor Nutter vowed to apply these concepts first to the city's long-suffering waterfront upon with developers want to build two major casino complexes. While we can't disparage gambling casinos enough, especially those within struggling rust-belt cities, Nutter hopes to minimize their detrimental impact by either shoe-horning them into the newly proposed streetcape restoration plan or relocate them over to the airport. And to no one's surprise, the developers have objected, despite the fact that some have offered even better locations for these sinkholes of wealth, like out at the airport. What is it about the mind of the real estate developer that fails to grasp the concepts and implications of accommodation, common sense, and neighborhood hostility? Yes, they made deals with the former administration and the state, but the neighborhood doesn't want them. Their presence will add nothing to the city's livability. And the rampant spread of gambling across the region will ultimately make them nonviable. The last thing Philadelphia (or any city) needs are more multi-million dollar eyesores sucking the life out of its fragile neighborhoods. But the developers have their contracts worked out with politicians and officials beholden to no one affected by these projects. Makes you wonder how some people sleep at night.

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