LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY)– “The World’s First Cajun Restaurant” location, also known as Don’s Seafood, is reemerging with a new identity in Downtown Lafayette.

Ashby Crossing will be a new mixed-used development project. The new development hopes to pay homage to the influence Don’s Seafood had in the 1930s, keeping the heritage alive. Even in namesake, Ashby Crossing pays homage to Ashby “Rocky” Landry, owner of Don’s Seafood.

Don’s Seafood occupied the space for over eight decades. After closing in 2020, Hub City Holdings purchased the building in January 2021.

“It’s been a place that people loved to gather for many many years and we wanted to continue to have that legacy move into the future. And we knew that. We were excited to get our hands on it and continue to make it an important piece of downtown,” says John Peterson with Hub City Holdings.

According to the Developing Lafayette website, the first phase of the Ashby Crossing development will feature a “sit-down and quick-service restaurant concept,” in the 6,000 square foot restaurant space. Peterson says future phases will consist of retail spaces and a 5-story condominium building.

By reorienting the front of the building to face Johnston St. and Parc San Souci, the development team hopes to speak to a more modern way of living in Downtown Lafayette.

“People want to live, work play in a more urban environment. We see this as the next step. We are reaching that critical mass where more and more people will be there. All of that stuff adds to that critical mass,” says Peterson.