ON THE MENU — Go inside Chick-fil-A’s plans to upgrade, take care of employees during closure

Published 12:40 am Wednesday, June 7, 2023

A Port Arthur and Mid County staple closed at the end of May for renovations, but is reopening in August with a fresh look inside and out.

The Chick-fil-A on Memorial Boulevard, as well as the Groves location, is owned by Mike and Becky Tschirhart.

“We will be getting a new dining room with new furniture, an updated playground, gutting the kitchen and getting all new equipment, replacing the plumbing and electricity, and knocking out the back wall of the kitchen and expanding 300 more square feet,” Mike said.

All of the employees at the Memorial Boulevard location continue to receive their pay throughout the renovations. (Photo courtesy of Mike Tschirhart)

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In addition, they will be adding a double drive-through lane completely around the building and installing additional canopies for team members outside.

The team members, Mike said, were understandably anxious when they learned of the renovations.

“I promised all of them that they would get full pay while we were doing the renovation,” Mike said. “We’re very fortunate to be able to do that.”

The store employs approximately 80 people.

Becky said the two had been saving in order to ensure their employees were taken care of.

“They’re really valuable and well trained,” she said. “We need them.”

Mike said 80-90 percent of them opted to work at the Groves location. Some chose to take an extended vacation. And others are helping open new Chick-fil-As in other parts of the country.

Currently there are more than 2,400 Chick-fil-A restaurants in the U.S., according to information from the company. The first opened in Atlanta in 1967.

Mike said the City of Port Arthur was very cooperative in giving extra easements to expand as much as possible to make the drive-through more convenient for customers.

Contractors are on site each day, he said, and those interested in following along can do so on Facebook where they’ll post frequent photos of the renovations as they continue.

A planned reopening date currently is Aug. 24.

The Groves Chick-fil-A is located on Texas 73 near Twin City Highway.