End of an era: Phoenix Old Station Subs hits the market after nearly 40 years

Mar 18, 2024, 4:35 AM | Updated: 6:34 am

A photo posted to the Old Station Subs Facebook page in 2014 shows the downtown Phoenix sandwich sh...

A photo posted to the Old Station Subs Facebook page in 2014 shows the downtown Phoenix sandwich shop, before the Zone homeless encampment overtook the area. (Facebook Photo/Old Station Subs)

(Facebook Photo/Old Station Subs)

PHOENIX — That’s a wrap for Old Station Subs as we know it. Joe Faillace has owned this longstanding Phoenix restaurant since 1986. Now, he’s selling the business.

“We want $139,000,” he told KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Outspoken with Bruce and Gaydos on Friday. “Ten years ago, I refused $250,000 … it’s a big drop, no doubt.”

The last time Faillace called in to the station, he said he was going to try to make things work.

However, he said he changed his tune because the times are changing and the business needs new blood.

Why Old Station Subs is up for sale

“The light rail’s coming down. Across the street, they’re building an apartment complex. They’re building another building on Eighth Avenue,” he said.

He added that he is 71, which means he wants to focus on saving money instead of changing with the times.

“I don’t know social media. I don’t understand it. We need a young person in there,” Faillace added.

It’s been a long road leading up to this decision.

How a homeless encampment impacted his business

A few years ago, the area around the eatery at Jefferson Street and 13th Avenue was littered with defecation and drug needles, Faillace said.

That’s because it was close to a longstanding homeless encampment known as The Zone.

It was a hub of crime and danger, according to Faillace and other business owners and residents in the area. They sued the city of Phoenix, saying leaders failed to properly maintain the area and enforce laws.

The city began cleaning up The Zone in May 2023, wrapping up the process in November.

Before the cleanup, there were well over 1,000 people experiencing homelessness living on the streets, he added.

“When they cleaned it up, it looked 1,000% better,” Faillace said. “How could it not be better? I mean, there was five hundred tents at least.”

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End of an era: Phoenix Old Station Subs hits the market after nearly 40 years