Back in 2014, news that the iconic A&W outlet in PJ will be closed down shocked many fans
Media reports in 2014 stated that the popular outlet will be demolished by December 2014 to make way for new developments, as it is located in a prime area, near Amcorp Mall and the Taman Jaya light rail transit (LRT) station.
It was later learned that KUB Malaysia Sdn Bhd, the owner of the A&W Malaysia franchise, was planning to shut down the outlet temporarily for about three years to revamp and facilitate the construction of the KUB Tower project.
News of the impending closure sent fans into a frenzy as they rushed to the fast-food restaurant which has been around since 1965 to savour its signature offerings like A&W's Root Beer and Coney Dog (now known as RB and Chicken/Beef Coney) at the outlet for "one last time".
Almost four years after the news broke, the A&W outlet is still around until today
The restaurant is still operational 24-hours, along with another A&W outlet at the PJ Palms Sport Centre nearby. The latter was opened in 2015 and it is just 230 metres away.
It is learned that KUB's plan has been put on hold because the Petaling Jaya City Council (MBPJ) has yet to give its approval for the company to transform the A&W restaurant site into two office towers
This was revealed recently by KUB president and group managing director Datuk Abdul Rahim Mohd Zin. According to Rahim, KUB was supposed to obtain the green light from MBPJ last July.
"It has been taking some time and the process has been long and tedious. We have gone through several rounds to get MBPJ's approval on the matter.
"We have come to a stage where I hope we will get the approval by this month," he told The Edge Financial Daily.
The Edge Financial Daily reported Abdul Rahim as saying that the proposed redevelopment plan comes under a new development policy by the council, and since it has never been dealt with before, it is one of the reasons why there's a delay in the envisioned redevelopment.
KUB is also looking to sell A&W, provided that it is sold at the right price
The investment holding company has been considering the sales of A&W, but reiterated on several occasions that it will only sell it if it receives the right bid.
In another The Edge Financial Daily report, Abdul Rahim was quoted as saying, "We're looking to sell A&W (M) Sdn Bhd for the right price. We had received several offers, but none of them came close to what we were looking at."
He added that the final decision on the buyer is still up to A&W master franchisor, A Great American Brand LLC. It was learned that KUB has a three-year development agreement inked with A Great American Brand, which will end in June 2019.
There is a total of 36 A&W outlets nationwide, and KUB is expected to open 25 more restaurants by the end of 2019, as per the franchise development agreement.