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He’s got the updates: Winnipegger posting weekly Arby’s construction reports

Amongst the posts about traffic gripes and calls for plumber recommendations, frequent visitors to the Winnipeg subreddit page have come to expect weekly updates from Darryl Allan.

Over the past six months, Allan has been posting faithful progress reports on the construction of a hot new restaurant coming to town – Arby’s.

“It just kind of took on a life of its own,” Allan told CTV News Winnipeg in an interview.

Allan moved to Winnipeg with his wife about a year ago from Fort Frances, Ont. Their new apartment has a bird’s-eye view of the future home of Arby’s on Sterling Lyon Parkway.

A frequent Redditor, Allan saw someone post on the Winnipeg page, asking for information about the new Arby’s coming to town.

He responded with a photo showing the early stages of the chain’s construction with an excavator hard at work clearing the site.

As Winnipeg has been sorely lacking in the chain’s signature roast beef sandwiches and curly fries since its last Winnipeg location closed a few years back, Redditors ate it up.

“From that, it was like, ‘gee, could you set up a webcam? Could you do like a time-lapse?’ No, but every now and then I can do a little update on what’s happening with the building.”

A screenshot of Allan’s April update on construction of Winnipeg’s new Arby’s. (Reddit)

As the concrete was poured, the steel frame installed and roofing laid, Allan was there updating the hungry masses.

He also began adding in details on the construction of Winnipeg’s first Krispy Kreme, which is being built nearby and is slated to open late this spring. His cat Mishka also makes frequent appearances in the posts, and has become something of a Reddit star, herself.

“I introduced her as my assistant site superintendent and ever since then, the number of people that have been checking it out kind of like doubled,” he said.

Dan Woychuk with Forster Harvard Development Corp., the company overseeing the project, says he knew the build would garner attention.

“We’re not surprised that a number of people would be following the construction and the new developments at Seasons, given especially that there are about 2,500 residences located on site or adjacent to the site.”

Allan’s cat Mishka poses in front of the site of Winnipeg’s future Arby’s in an April Reddit post. (Reddit)

Woychuk says the development will also house a Pet Valu. He says crews are working on finishing the structure, completing the façade and adding landscaping.

He expects both businesses to open this fall, with even more meats to come elsewhere in the country.

“The operator of this Arby’s location is a multi-unit operator based in western Canada, and it is our understanding that there will be several other Arby’s opened in the western provinces.”

Meantime, Allan is looking forward to when the new restaurant to open its doors, even though that will end his weekly progress reports.

“Of course it’s got a lifespan. Once the place is open, it’s done. When that happens I’ll say I’ve had some fun, and it’s over now.”

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