Einstein’s downtown shop could be the first of several

Einstein Bros. Bagels new location on a prominent downtown corner could be the first of several new locations in the Colorado Springs area.

“Colorado Springs is an underdeveloped market for us, and we felt like it was a good time to expand in that area,” said Mike Ellis, executive vice president of franchise development.

He said Einstein are looking at other areas to expand to the north and south , though he declined to discuss specific areas. The company’s new downtown location will be its fourth restaurant in town, Ellis said.

He expects the new location at the corner of Tejon and Kiowa streets to open at the end of this year or early in 2012. The company signed a 10-year lease for 30 and 32 N. Tejon St., the former locations of Shewmaker’s Camera and Mrs. Field’s Cookies.

Ellis said the decision was all about location –  downtown office space, city and county buildings, along with Palmer High School and Colorado College – all make downtown a good place to be for the Denver-based bagel chain.

While it’s just a block from existing Bruger’s Bagels at 132 N. Tejon St., Ellis said that wasn’t a concern when deciding to move into the downtown corner.

“I think there’s plenty of business in that market to support everyone,” Ellis said. “Look at Starbucks. There are two within a couple blocks of each other and they are both doing well. That’s a vibrant market.”