FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – In-N-Out Burger will open its newest restaurant Thursday in Fort Worth.
The California chain draws huge crowds of fanatical food followers. The managers of the new location on West 7th Street have hired off-duty officers and brought in extra help to control traffic and as a sign they want to be good neighbors, much like the initial North Texas restaurants in Frisco, Allen and Dallas.
“We recognize that if we’ve got lines that are stacking up cars we don’t want to block people’s access to their businesses or have someone parking on someone else’s property because that’s not right either,” said Carl Van Fleet, a spokesman for In-N-Out Burger.
That’s why in-N-Out not only has signs telling customers where they can park, they’ve given signs to other businesses telling people where the can’t park.
West 7th Street is vastly different than it was when In-N-Out Burger first scouted the location three years ago.
The business and entertainment corridor has flourished. Parking and traffic are issues that store and restaurant managers are becoming more concerned about.
In-N-Out burger opened its doors for workers from neighboring businesses first to let them know the business wants to be a positive influence on West 7th Street.
“Hopefully everybody else recognizes that we are going to bring a lot of customers to the area, we hope to bring a lot of customers to the area, that it should be good for everybody,” Van Fleet said.
Fred’s Restaurant, well-known locally for its burgers, used to stand out because it was the only eatery amid acres of decaying warehouses.
Now the restaurant is the only old building tucked beneath shiny, new construction.
But Fred’s hasn’t been swallowed by the new development. It’s thrived. And restaurant workers say it won’t be a burger vs. burger competition. West 7th is too diverse for that.
“Not that its better or worse, it’s just different,” Fred’s General Manager Lindsey Snowden said of the businesses in the area. “As far as competition there’s not any. We all bring a different clientele here and so we all sort of bolster each other’s business, you know?”
For those wishing to try the first of In-N-Out’s westward expansion into North Texas, the city of Fort Worth has a special traffic plan set for Thursday. They’re asking customers to enter the line from either Hamilton and University or West 7th and Foch. Officers will be on hand to guide drivers.
You will not be allowed to make a left turn into the parking lot.