Monday, January 9, 2023

[EXCLUSIVE] Surprising Fast Food Eatery Planning New Atlanta Area Location

Interest rates over 7 percent, Dansby Swanson leaving his hometown Braves, 99X returning to Atlanta airwaves and UGA returning to National Championship for a second consecutive year:  all things that some might call surprising.  Something we would honestly refer to as shocking: a new Boston Market restaurant planned for metro Atlanta!  

The City of Stonecrest Planning Commission was on January 3 presented a SLUP (Special Land Use Permit) request for a developer to build a new ground-up Boston Market at 2708 Evans Mill Road in DeKalb County.  The roughly one acre property is described as being located at the southeast quadrant of Evans Mill Road and Covington Highway and is currently vacant.   The property is already zoned C-1 Local Commercial, but the planned drive-thru component is what necessitates the SLUP.  

The Planning Commissioners gushed over the prospect of having Boston Market in their community and unanimously approved the request which will next go before the City Council on February 27. 

Plans submitted to the City of Stonecrest indicate that Charlotte, NC-based Pavilion Development Company is behind the plan to build the roughly 2,500 square foot Boston Market restaurant on the site.  Renderings attached to the application show a new look Boston Market different from any that remain in metro Atlanta or that we have seen elsewhere.  A representative from Pavilion indicated that the new restaurant will be corporately owned.  

Following several years of closures, both locally and nationally, Boston Market operates just three locations in metro Atlanta and 288 locations nationwide.  The three currently remaining Atlanta area locations are: Briarcliff and North Druid Hills Roads not far from Toco Hills, Powers Ferry Road, in the same center as CVS, not far from Truist Park, and in Stone Mountain on Stone Mountain Highway.        

In January 2019, Boston Market closed their East Cobb location on Sandy Plains Road followed by 45 closures nationwide later that July.  Company executives blamed the closures on "an evolving restaurant industry that faces increasing competition, rising costs and shifting consumer preferences."  The July closures included local restaurants on Redan Road in Stone Mountain and on Highway 29 in Lilburn.  In January 2020, the company closed their Roswell restaurant on Holcomb Bridge Road.  The company also in recent years shuttered locations at Fort Benning, Fort Stewart, and Fort Gordon.  

Boston Market, originally Boston Chicken, began in Newton, Massachusetts in 1984, and was owned by McDonald's from 2000 until 2007.  Today, the chain is based in Golden, Colorado, and was up until early 2020 owned by Sun Capital Partners, a private equity firm.     

In April 2020, Sun Capital Partners sold Boston Market to Engage Brands, LLC, a company of Rohan Group, owned by entrepreneur Jignesh "Jay" Pandya.  Also in April, the company shuttered Atlanta area locations in Sandy Springs (where a new Sonic is now under construction) and in Duluth (currently being renovated into a medical facility).  

Industry observers note that it's promising to see an established restaurateur take the reins at Boston Market versus its former private equity owners who are often in the business for different reasons.   

Pandya Restaurant Growth Brands, LLC, a separate but related entity, purchased Corner Bakery from Atlanta-based private equity firm Roark Capital Group in October 2020.  Pandya sees opportunities for strategic alliances between Corner Bakery and Boston Market, the company said in a statement when the purchase was announced.  For its part, Corner Bakery, too, has closed several Atlanta area locations but perhaps we could see new "Corner Market" locations akin to Yum Brands and their "KenTacoHut" locations which at times feature Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC), Taco Bell, and Pizza Hut restaurants in the same building.  

If all goes well, the new Boston Market in Stonecrest should open later this year.  

Are you excited for the return of Boston Market to metro Atlanta?  If Boston Market did continue to expand in metro Atlanta, where would you like to see them open next?  What quick serve restaurant (QSR) do you perceive as healthiest? 

Please share your thoughts below.  


AGS said...

It’s nice to see that they aren’t being shuttered completely like so many others. It’s definitely nice to know they have chosen a location where there is excitement for them, too.

Disneypal said...

I wish them success. Personally, I haven't eaten at Boston Market in several years, even though I work about a mile from a location.

Anonymous said...

Boston Market is a lot like KFC in that their chicken is pretty good, but the sides make the place unbearable. Even CFA has a decent mac and cheese now and Bostom Market still tastes like a science project.

Anonymous said...

Well they really never left Metro Atlanta they had a location in Stone Mountain That was older but it closed 2 years ago due to the location being in an undesirable area. I think they have another location in Norcross

Anonymous said...

Would love one in Newnan/sharpsburg

Anonymous said...

I would like to have a Red Robin restaurant or A Papa Murphy Pizza restaurant near Stonecrest

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