The AMF Rocket Bowl on De Soto Avenue may be gone, but the site's owners are working hard to bring new businesses to the area.
"It has been 20 years since we've had a new development in the area," said Brian Fagan of Selective Real Estate Services. "We want to bring in businesses that can serve Chatsworth businesses' daytime population," he added.
The AMF Rocket Bowl, a 32-lane bowling alley and classic American diner opened in 1962 as Comet Lanes at De Soto Avenue near Nordhoff Street, and closed its doors in May 2009 after 47 years in business. Located near what is now Pratt & Whitney's Rocketdyne plant, it became the after-work and weekend hangout for nearby workers and civic groups.
Located at the southwest corner of De Soto Avenue and Knapp Street, the new shopping center, dubbed De Soto Square Shopping Center, will cover about 30,000 square feet. Site plans show a host of retail space and possibly a bank.
Fagan said that the first phase of construction would conclude around November of this year, with McDonald's the first business to begin operations. His company is currently negotiating with several national tenants, he said. The balance of the center will be completed in early of 2011, he said.