RIDGELAND, MS (WLBT) - The Ridgeland mayor and aldermen are giving the owner of a closed restaurant sixty days to begin tearing it down.
Ralph and Kacoo’s opened on County Line Road next to the Cabot Lodge hotel in 1990. It closed for renovations in 1999 and never reopened. It has since become an eyesore and a haven for vagrants, with broken windows and open doors.
Alan Hart, Ridgeland’s director of community development, says the mayor and aldermen voted to move forward with declaring the property a menace, but he said the owner has been cooperative and willing to clean it up. They are giving him 60 days to begin demolishing the building on his own. If he does not, Hart says the city will have it demolished and bill the owner.
Hart says the owner is still hoping to attract a new business to the site and has been in talks with the Hardee’s fast-food chain. A Wendy’s restaurant now sits in what was once part of the Ralph & Kacoo’s parking lot, but Hart says there is still enough property to accommodate another similar business. Hardee’s was once located in the current Whataburger building closer to I-55.
Back in 2000, Hooters was in talks with the then-owner of the Ralph & Kacoo’s property to open there. The mayor expressed opposition to having such a business in the city, and Hooters eventually opened a restaurant in Jackson instead.
A new Shrimp Basket restaurant opened last month in the nearby Shoney’s building. Shoney’s had been closed for several years.