Fortunately, "move" doesn't necessarily mean "close." I had the pleasure of patronizing Stroud's and having some of their great fried chicken a couple of years ago when I went to KC for my job. Hopefully, they will simply relocate. Here's the KC Star article:
City says Stroud’s must make way for road widening
By JOYCE SMITH
The Kansas City Star
If you have a vacant old roadhouse under a bridge, call Stroud’s.
For decades, Stroud’s restaurant has been famous for its crispy fried chicken — and for its buckled building in the shadows of a Troost Avenue bridge. But while Stroud’s will continue to operate at 1015 E. 85th St. for the next few months, it must find a new home by the end of the year.
The city wants to replace the bridge and widen Troost at 85th Street. Also, 85th Street would be widened to four lanes from Holmes Road to Tracy Avenue.
“Stroud’s just happens to fall in a bad location,” said Jennifer Berry, project coordinator for Jackson County Public Works, which is managing the project for the city. “To widen the road, it takes half of their building.”
The city and Stroud’s owner Mike Donegan have agreed to a financial settlement for the property.
“I’m not crazy about it, but I don’t have a choice, and I wasn’t raised to be a whiner so I’m not going to do it,” Donegan said. “I’d like to move it, but I don’t know if that’s feasible.”
Donegan is decidedly against strip centers and longs for another old roadhouse under a viaduct.
Even founder Helen Stroud called Stroud’s a “shack” when she opened her barbecue restaurant on the southwest corner of 85th and Holmes Road in 1933. The location, on the outskirts of the city, sold ribs for 15 cents, sardines for a dime and draft beer for a nickel. But one Fourth of July, the cook bought some fryers — three for a dollar.
Chicken sold out that night and has been on the menu since, with every piece pan-fried to order and served directly from old iron skillets.
By 1972 Stroud was tired of the long hours and six-day weeks, so she sold the operation. A few years later, Donegan and a partner bought the restaurant and have since expanded three times. Donegan, who later bought out his partner, also owns Stroud’s North at 5410 N.E. Oak Ridge Drive.
The 2005 edition of Zagat Survey’s America’s Top Restaurants noted Stroud’s “legendary fried chicken” and warped yet homey setting, which was also called a “wonderful dump.” Martha Stewart Living magazine listed it as a “must-try road-trip destination” in the November 2002 issue. Stroud’s also won a 1998 James Beard Award for regional classic cuisine.
Parking is at such a premium that customers often walk along the edge of bustling two-lane 85th Street to reach the front door. On weekends, they pack the bar as they wait up to two hours for crispy fried chicken, cream pan gravy and cinnamon rolls, served family style.
Stroud’s — with a slogan of “We choke our own chickens” — serves nearly 12,000 pounds of chicken a week.
“Going to Stroud’s and not-so-daintily ravaging a fried chicken is an exercise in tradition. Where will we waddle to now?” said longtime customer Pat O’Neill of Kansas City.
Paul Sepe, an out-of-town fan, agreed.
“It’s modest and simple, but all the cars parked in front and down the street and under the viaduct tell you it’s someplace special,” said Sepe, who often makes road trips from his New Hampshire home to eat at Stroud’s and other favorites.
“I love the crooked windows and the wooden floors polished from decades of use — and maybe ambient grease. It (a move) will be OK as long as they bring their skillets and grease, but it won’t be quite the same.”
To reach Joyce Smith, retail and small-business reporter, call (816) 234-4692 or send e-mail to email@example.com