Winstead’s is closing its location on 95th Street in Lenexa near Oak Park Mall.
Once the restaurant closes April 14, only three Winstead’s steakburger joints will remain in the Kansas City area. Winstead’s must vacate the facility at 12056 95th St. by April 20. It has been in operation in Lenexa for 28 years.
Raising Cane’s plans to build a restaurant at that location. The redevelopment project would see the Winstead’s restaurant on 95th Street demolished and replaced with a Raising Cane’s restaurant with a drive-through.
Kaitlyn Krause, a manager who formerly worked at the Winstead’s Northland location before it closed last fall, said all employees have been offered jobs at the other Winstead’s locations. Nonetheless, after hearing rumors several weeks ago about the closing, several employees have quit, so Winstead’s in Lenexa is operating on reduced hours during its last week open.
Krause said the Winstead’s owners, Haddad Restaurant Group, have voiced the goal of refocusing the steakburger restaurant business into a primarily drive-through operation. Half of the company’s sales come from drive-through purchases.
“They would like to make it a lot more drive-through friendly,” Krause said. “I know that’s something they would like to see happen, but I’m not involved in the higher-up business decisions.”
Rent in the shopping areas around Oak Park Mall is on the rise, Krause said, adding that this is another possible driving factor for the Winstead’s owners to decide against renewing their lease on 95th Street.
“We’re really sad to see this place go, but at the same time, we are hoping that our owners do choose to rebuild some of the different locations,” she said. “That way, there’s more of a Winstead’s presence in Kansas City.”