Chick-fil-A reopens on Lafayette Parkway

Published 6:42 pm Thursday, November 2, 2023

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Fans of the original chicken sandwich on the east side of LaGrange can rejoice as the Chick-fil-A on Lafayette Parkway has reopened after renovations.

The restaurant reopened on Thursday with little fanfare complete with a larger kitchen, updated dining room and improved drive-thru system.

Operator Rob Bowman said they are excited to be back open with the renovated restaurant. He said Chick-fil-A typically likes to renovate restaurants about every 13 years to keep them looking new. He has been at the location since it opened 12 years ago so it was about time.

Bowman said he opened the store on his birthday, Dec. 2, 2010.

“About every 13 years or so we’d like to redo the building. We want to keep Chick-fil-A always looking new and looking fresh, so when you go into a Chick-fil-A it never looks rundown or old, Bowman said.

The update also allows them to innovate and keep up with demand from customers.

“Our kitchen was a little antiquated, as far as functionality of being able to produce as much food as fast as we want to. So we got a lot of new equipment and a new design in the kitchen that allows us to be able to have a much better flow,” he said.

The store also has added a couple of big innovations for the drive-thru — a new drive-thru lane and a drive-thru walk-out door.

“We added a third drive-thru lane, which is for mobile only so customers can place a mobile order online. They come through and they’ll scan the QR code in the drive-thru lane and they’ll go around and we’ll bring that food out to them so makes it super fast. They have their own dedicated lane, just for mobile, Bowman said.

The restaurant has also added a door in their drive-thru area where they can walk orders out to customers directly from the drive-thru rather than having to reach through a window or walk around to another door. He said the change will allow for them to have better face-to-face customer service and to be able to deliver the food faster.

Bowman said that the renovations did force them to take out the playground that had been at the front of the restaurant.

“With the renovations, we only had so much property, and so to be able to get our kitchen to where we needed it and our drive-thru cockpit. It was going to cut our seats by 60 percent,” he said.

“The only way that we could get more seats back in the restaurant was to take out the playground. That was a very hard decision, but it brought our amount of seats that we have in the restaurant back up to where it would be very doable,” Bowman said. “I hate to do that. I didn’t want to do that but I didn’t see any other way around it.”

Bowman said they are hiring. The restaurant has planned open interviews at the LaGrange Memorial Library on Nov. 17 and Nov. 19.

“We’re always hiring,” Bowman said. “We have a lot of high school, a lot of college kids, so they graduate and move on. So we’re always preparing and getting ready for that next wave.”

“I’m very excited. We were shut down for three months, so to be able to have a new, beautiful store for people to come and eat in and new innovations with mobile-thru, it’s super exciting, Bowman said.