Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Another Zaxby's to Hatch ITP Next Year

Athens-based Zaxby's will soon add another location to its suddenly growing store count inside the Perimeter (ITP).  Up until recently, Zaxby's lone ITP location was on Memorial Drive across from Belvedere Plaza, not far from the former Avondale Mall, now home to Walmart.  Zaxby's also has a location on Hugh Howell near Lawreceville Highway in Tucker, but it's OTP.  

This past July, Zaxby's opened their highly anticipated Buckhead location on Roswell Road near Wieuca Road. Its opening was so successful that an off-duty APD officer was brought in in the days following the opening to direct traffic.  In late October, construction finally started on Zaxby's new Chamblee location in an outparcel of Lowe's Home Improvement.  I drove by recently and judging from the little progress that has been made, I'd wager their planned January 23rd opening may be pushed at least a a few weeks.

Now Zaxby's will add another intown location, this time on North Druid Hills Road, near North DeKalb Mall. Located next to Pier 1 Imports, the new restaurant opens at a time when interest and consumer traffic in the area surrounding the mall has decreased substantially.  Costco Wholesale had been in talks with the mall's owner Hendon Properties repeatedly over the years, but I'm told at this point the Costco that opened last year in TOWN Brookhaven is in lieu of the previously proposed North DeKalb location.  (Clearly the two markets are different, but it seems the store is simply off the books)

The Zaxby's will occupy about an acre of land that has sat vacant for years, and judging from the work being done onsite, may feature access from both North Druid Hills and Sweet Briar Roads.  Rumors are flying among residents and mall employees that a Golden Corral is opening next to the Zaxby's too but there is simply not enough room for both.  Though representatives from mall owner Hendon Properties were unable to confirm much, they were able tell me that the Zaxby's land was originally their property and it was sold to the restaurant.  Judging from the initial work being done, I'd hope to see the restaurant open for business sometime around late March or early April.


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Golden Corral has been experimenting with smaller sites where restaurants measure roughly 7800 s/f as opposed to their larger roughly 12,000 s/f locations.  Its parking requirements also decrease from 155 to 115 spaces with the smaller locations. Perhaps the Golden Corral will make use of other available land surrounding or within the mall?

While their space is not large enough for a Golden Corral, Checkers recently shuttered their longstanding restaurant at the corner of  North Druid Hills Road and Lawrenceville Highway, and its size and location could be ideal for another fast food eatery.  When I first mentioned its closure, numerous people mentioned Starbucks as an ideal replacement but personally I'd love to see a Cookout open!

Zaxby's immediate neighbors are a jewelry store and the aforementioned Pier 1 Imports.   Just north on North Druid Hills though, a McDonald's recently renovated and added a second drive-thru and Chick-fil-A maintains its triple drive-thru only location after it closed its location within North DeKalb Mall in early 2010.     It's worth noting that not far from Zaxby's new location is an abandoned Mrs. Winner's Chicken & Biscuits in an outparcel near The Home Depot.  This restaurant has been vacant for upwards of five years and practically screams redevelopment.

I've lived in this neighborhood my entire life and have fond memories of going to Challenges and the AMC Theaters as a youngster.  I'd name some of  my other favorites, but then I'd have nothing for my Twitter trivia, which by the way, you should be playing and following.

Now it's your turn, area resident or not, what do you think could be done at this mall or in the area surrounding it to make it popular once again?  What should occupy the the old Checkers or Mrs. Winner's? Are you excited about the upcoming Zaxby's?  Please share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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21 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'd love a BackYard Burgers place to open up because it's so nice to hear Christian music while you're eating. I just love it.

Anonymous said...

I love Zaxbys, I just sent a mass text to all my friends, I'm so excited.

Anonymous said...

Tear down everything in sight and start over. The place is a blight and the nearby N Dekalb Mall is a ghost town.

Anonymous said...

I'd love to see a Zaxby's there for starters because I love Zaxby's and hate having to drive all the way to Tucker to get some. Plus I would just love to see some life back in the N. Dekalb Mall area. As a kid and teenager I remember spending tons of time at that mall - I swear my friends and I were there every weekend. It was the place to be. For the last 7-10 years though, it's just been a scary place to be and there frankly isn't much draw store-wise from the mall itself. I can't wait for this Zaxby's to open and hopefully it'll draw some more redevelopment for the area!

Anonymous said...

Put the Costco back "on the books". Very tired of driving to Cumberland or Satellite Blvd and this area can support a Costco, no problem.

Grant, the Hipster Dad said...

I don't know that there's a chain in America that has suffered the quality drop of Zaxby's. Once upon a time, when guests had to wait for their food and the fingers came out golden brown and wonderful, it was something special. If you want that experience today, you have to visit the Guthrie's on Chamblee-Dunwoody.

On the other hand, hey, Fanta Cherry in the soda fountain. That's still neat.

Anonymous said...

yo you forgot about the one on roswell rd in north buckhead!

Anonymous said...

oh and hell no to costco in AS - there's one just up the rd in brookhaven anyway.

Anonymous said...

As a local resident and user of the Emory Park and Ride in the North Dekalb parking lot, I'd love to see a coffee/tea shop of some kind that doesn't involve a fast food restaurant or the Quiktime (QT) gas station nearby.

Andre said...

I don't understand the issue with Zaxby's and going ITP. That Memorial Drive location is about 2 years old. I remember when they built that. I think the only one that's actually in the city of Atlanta, is the Camp Creek location that barely falls into the 30331 zip code. What gives??

TheJohnP said...

Don't get the love that Zaxby's gets, everytime I've eaten there I found their food mediocre at best.

Now I would love to see a CookOut come to Atlanta. But don't forsee it happening anytime soon.

And for those looking for good food in the area, drive up to Suburban Plaza to get a bite at Cozy Buger Town.

Atlantan99 said...

Hey John P,

For me Zaxby's fries and chicken have gotten increasingly salty but I'd surely go the North DeKalb location occasionally.

As far as Cook-Out goes... BRING IT ON! I would love to see them open here and have made that clear to both industry friends and Cook-Out corporate, so hopefully sooner, rather than later, they open in Atlanta.

One of these days I'll have to make it over to CBT, you seem to sing their praises every chance you get, so I've set the bar high! ;)

Thanks for the comments and for reading the blog!

TheJohnP said...

I'm sure CBT won't disappoint. If they do, I'll give you your money back.

And the one chain I would LOVE to see in Atlanta is Whataburger. There's certainly enough Texans to keep it in business forever, but don't see them going any further than Birgmingham, AL. alas.

TheJohnP said...

Noticed there was some clearing out at the old Mrs Winners in front of Home Depot today. Any idea who might be renovating/taking over that space?

Atlantan99 said...

Hey @ JohnP,

I had not been over that way this week but would be delighted to see something happen there! Let me know if you see any signs.

Thanks!

Anonymous said...

The best thing we could do for N. Dekalb mall is SHOP THERE. Everyone complains about how empty and awful the mall is, but I don't know many people from Medlock Park who shop there. There are many good stores, and if more people shop there more will open - including eateries.

Anonymous said...

There's also one on Holcomb bridge rd

Anonymous said...

Mrs. Winners closed last year--it's not been vacant for 5 years. It's good to see something coming to the vacant lot beside Pier 1 Imports, but a shame that the new project had to expand back toward the mall and then across the street to dig up every last bit of grass left around the mall, especially when there are acres of asphalt there.

Anonymous said...

What are they bulding behind the doctors office on that corner where Pier 1 is? Golden Corral would be nice, but where did thar rumor come from? N.Dekalb Mall has perfect anchor stores, it's the small stores and Food Court that suck.

Atlantan99 said...

@Anon,

That is an excellent question. The small parcel behind the doctor's office is being worked on but I can't see it being large enough for much. The possible Golden Corral would be located in an outparcel of the Macy's parking lot ( near where the mall occasionally hosts the traveling fair)

Thanks for reading the blog and for the questions!

Anonymous said...

golden corral was supposed to be built in the other non-used mall lot on the l'ville hwy side. looks like the zoning board screwed that up...

the zoning board loves to clear cut trees for apts all over but wont let restaurants come into the already built up areas dekalb is so corrupt