By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
New dining experience coming to Springfield
James Carlson at District Square
James Carlson in front of soon-to-open District Square Food Hall in Springfield. (Photo by Barbara Augsdorfer/Effingham Herald)

By Barbara Augsdorfer, Editor for the Effingham Herald


Foodies of Effingham County, prepare your palates and tastebuds for a new dining experience.

Not a “food court,” but a “food hall” is a place where friends, coworkers, and families can gather – yeah, the kids can play on the artificial turf play area – but more importantly people with different food preferences can order what they want from six different restaurants and dine together.

The ambiance of District Square, with the chaise lounges and turf play area, patio dining, suggests a medium- to upscale dining experience.

“District Square is more than just a food hall, it is a place where culinary delights, community and innovation come together,” said owner James Carlson. “District Square is not only a place for dining, but also a haven for families.” The venue features a fenced and turfed area for children to play.

“The turf can handle high traffic. It’s pet friendly, and it’s safe,” Carlson said.

District Square lawn
Through collaboration with the City of Springfield and its revitalization of Ulmer Park across the street from District Square, Carlson believes District Square will have a profound impact on the community’s success.

According to Carlson, District Square will be a hub of culinary diversity, featuring six micro-kitchens with each one offering a unique menu. Three micro-kitchens have been selected, with three more still available. Frencheese was recently announced with two more micro-kitchens to be announced April 17 and 18.

Carlson added, “Each tenant undergoes a screening process, including tastings and marketing evaluations before finalizing contracts.”

Each kitchen will be equipped with advanced technology, digital menus, a point-of-sale system, and an advanced digital kiosk for easy ordering, Carlson said. The food hall has also partnered with food platforms such as Door Dash and Uber Eats.

“We’re hoping to be open in July,” Carlson said. “Our goal is to be (open) sooner, but we’re not rushing the process because we want it done correctly.”

Restaurants interested in applying for one of the three remaining micro-kitchens may contact Steve Ellis at 912-656-7832.