The Drive-Thru War of Meadow Street has been won by Dunkin' Donuts in a knock-out. This past weekend, Collegetown Bagels Express quietly announced its closing, effective immediately.
CTB Express was the newest of six outlets in the local franchise comprising Collegetown Bagels and Ithaca Bakery. Its raison d'etre was a drive-thru window, the only branch to have one.
It might have been a longshot in the first place, as the Express was actually competing with its own flagship store, only 4 blocks away. But a big blow was delivered last November, when Dunkin' Donuts opened a drive-thru facility right next door.
The Dunkin' Donuts store had the advantage of an entrance on Green St. as well as Meadow Street. CTB's side street was Cleveland Av., which is closed to car traffic at Meadow Street.
Then, of course, there is the strength of a national chain, with commercials with Rachael Ray, and the fact that CTB Express was considerably more ambitious than Dunkin' Donuts in its food offerings, which takes time. The CTB staff made food, whereas the Dunkin' Donuts staff only has to find donuts.
CTB/Ithaca Bakery is a great local business that provides great food, service, and ambience. They are a point of local pride, and they do an enormous amount of good work in the community.
We congratulate them on a valiant effort, and wish them continued success in their other enterprises, and thank them for all they do for Ithaca. If Dunkin' Donuts is really up for a challenge, we invite them to try to compete with CTB/Ithaca Bakery on that turf.
for Ithaca Blog