ON THE MENU — Groves Chick-fil-A using 2nd-largest Texas footprint to revamp drive-thru experience
Published 9:55 am Monday, February 7, 2022
GROVES — Chick-fil-A being built in Groves is big — literally. In fact, the footprint for the restaurant is the second largest in the state, according to the owner.
Mike Tschirhart, who owns the new location along with the one in Port Arthur, said the drive through will hold just under 50 cars.
“This is the largest Chick-fil-A plan that is being built right now,” Tschirhart said. “There is only one other Chick-fil-A in Texas that is this large. The property goes all of the way from 39th Street to the (Texas 73) access road. The drive-through lane will start at 39th and will be a double lane. There will be no turning around the building and no bottleneck.”
He added he wants the fast-food experience to be more personable, which has been reflected in changes to Chick-fil-A’s drive-through service.
“Instead of having drive-through windows, we will have a drive-through door,” Tschirhart said. “The door opens and we can walk out of the drive-through door and serve the customers in the first and second drive-through lanes. It will be quicker and allow us to provide better face-to-face service. That is what we are all about. We are trying to get away from using the speaker and doing everything face-to-face with an iPad taking orders personally.”
Tschirhart said the new spot came out of necessity as much as it did desire for expansion.
“We were outgrowing our location in Mid County,” Tschirhart said. “Looking around the Port Neches, Groves area, that was the place to be. Groves is very welcoming and has been recruiting Chick-fil-A to come to Groves. After looking at a few different locations, we chose that site. We know it is going to be perfect. Our Mid County store is getting really tight in the drive through, so we needed a new location that is easy to get into and get out of.”
Tschirhart said the location also makes it more convenient for people in Bridge City to have access to Chick-fil-A.
“We had a company come down from Atlanta and do some customer studies for a week at our store,” he said. “We found out that so many of our guests were coming from Groves, South Port Arthur and Bridge City that we needed a location that was more convenient for them. When we looked for a spot, we wanted to go closer to where out customers were coming from.”
The process has taken three years, but Tschirhart thanked Groves officials for their persistence.
The fast food spot is tentatively scheduled to open April 28.