Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen restaurant coming to Wheeling
Devotees of deep-fried, spicy poultry and flaky buttermilk biscuits soon will have a new place to get their fix in Wheeling.
The village board on Monday greenlit a plan for a Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen restaurant at the southwest corner of Dundee Road and Wille Avenue. The site is about a block west of Milwaukee Avenue and Wheeling's famed Restaurant Row.
A vacant, two-story commercial building now on the property will be razed to make room for a 2,512-square-foot restaurant building, village documents indicate.
The restaurant will feature dine-in, takeout and drive-through service, although developers with Zubha POP Foods expect 85% of its business will be done at the drive-through window, documents indicate.
In addition to approving a site plan for the restaurant, the village board on Monday also granted a special-use permit the proposed drive-through service.
Trustee Mary Papantos said she was delighted Popeyes is coming to town.
"This isn't a gourmet restaurant, but they will definitely contribute positively to the Wheeling tax revenue base," she said.
Trustee Mary Krueger noted that strip of Dundee Road will include three fast-food restaurants selling fried chicken sandwiches -- the other two being McDonald's and KFC.
"That area will become the Bermuda Triangle of awesome chicken sandwich options," she said.
Construction could begin in October, officials said, and a January 2022 opening is planned.
Headquartered in Miami, Popeyes has more than 2,600 stores in the U.S. and around the world. The nearest one to the Wheeling site is about four miles away in neighboring Arlington Heights.
Papantos expects the new restaurant will draw diners from nearby Northbrook and Deerfield, not just Wheeling.
"The location is good," she said. "I look forward to their opening."