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PHOENIX -- For about three years, a former Fazoli's restaurant sat empty next to the East Valley Institute of Technology in Mesa.

Superintendent Sally Downey said it's been a real eyesore since the Italian fast food restaurant closed its doors.

"People have broken into it and taken all the copper...and have really done some damage," she said.

That's about to change. EVIT spent $245,000 for the property on Main Street between Dobson and Alma School roads and has begun the makeover process.

Construction, welding and HVAC (heating, ventilation, air conditioning) students will take over before the interior design students work their magic. Then healthcare and culinary students will work together to offer specialty meals.

"People have allergies," said Downey. "Some people can't eat anything with MSG, some people are glucose intolerant. There's all these issue out there that have to do with the food we eat. So other than just good old healthy meals where we can count calories and portions we'll also have specialty type meals."

Downey said the restaurant will offer dine-in and takeout service when it opens next year.

EVIT will probably hold a contest for students to pick a name for the new restaurant.

Christina Estes, Reporter

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