If all goes as planned, Stephenville is about to get another new restaurant — Panda Express — which serves Chinese cuisine and has over 1,900 outlets in the family-owned chain.

On Feb. 23, the Planning and Zoning Commission approved a request for rezoning of two plots on the former Deluxe Inn site at 2865 W. Washington Street from B-4 to B-2 to accommodate the new restaurant.

Demolition of the Deluxe Inn was completed in early 2015 and the 5.9-acre plot across from South Christy Plaza has remained undeveloped since then.

Heidi Olsen of Brooks Real Estate — who’s handling real estate transactions involving the property that’s owned by Drini Real Estate Investments, LLC — said at the moment, there is no timeline on this.

“These contracts are very complicated and one thing can trigger another and make a timeline change, so we’re at least a couple of months out on all that,” she said. “But Brooks Real Estate will keep you informed when we have something definitive to tell you.”

Deputy City Administrator Jeremy Allen said, “Panda Express has told us they want to come to Stephenville and that it was okay for us to speak publicly about that. We expect this request that was approved by P & Z will be on to the Stephenville City Council agenda for consideration at their regular monthly meeting on March 7. Obviously nothing can move forward until they approve this rezoning request.”

Allen explained that here had been a bar in the Deluxe Inn and that B-4 zoning allows for the sale of alcohol on the premises.

That, of course dovetails nicely with the plans of Drini Real Estate Investments desire to keep that designation for the remaining part of parcel since they will be marketing it as a potential restaurant site.

The E-T will stay in touch with all involved parties and let our readers know when a definite timeline for the coming of the Panda Express has been finalized.