Panera Bread is coming to Riverbank’s bustling Crossroads shopping center.
The new standalone restaurant will be built from the ground up, just to the west of the Save Mart. City of Riverbank Planning and Building Manager Donna M. Kenney said the project should take around three months, depending on weather and materials. Once completed, the Panera will have a drive-through and be directly accessible off of Oakdale Road.
The site has been fenced off and heavy machinery brought in. While only clearing work has begun, shoppers passing by this week were already expressing their excitement about having the national chain known for its cafe and baked goods move into the popular shopping center.
This will be the fourth Panera Bread in the region. The first opened in Turlock in 2007 in the Monte Vista Crossings shopping center. Modesto has two Paneras, one on McHenry Avenue and another recently opened standalone location at Vintage Faire Mall.
The chain is known for its abundant baked goods, sandwiches, salads, soups and more. The company heralds its “clean food,” meaning meals made without artificial preservatives, sweeteners or flavorings. The bakery at each location cranks out fresh pastries, loaves of bread, bagels and more daily.
The Crossroads complex already has a number of national restaurant chains, including Applebee’s, Red Robin, Farmer Boys and Five Guys. Its only notable restaurant departure in recent years has been the closure of Krispy Kreme. The doughnut chain closed abruptly last May, but was quickly replaced by a Jamba Juice that July.
For more information, visit www.panerabread.com.