In-N-Out Burger loyalists northeast of the Interstate 8-Interstate 15 junction will be pleased to know a new location is coming to their neighborhood, but fans of a long-standing steakhouse the burger joint will replace are a little fried.
The uber-popular burger chain will soon have a new location in the Riverdale Shopping Center off Friars Road, just west of Mission Gorge Road. The new In-N-Out, and a drive-thru Starbucks Coffee will replace the Black Angus Steakhouse.
Friends Angel Valleir and Janis Thayer say they’re regulars at Black Angus, which has been open for 40 years.
“I’m sad. I’m sad I’ll have to find another place to go to lunch,” Thayer said.
“Not thrilled. They are on every corner. We don't need another In-N-Out,” Valleir added.
Google maps says there are eleven other In-N-Out Burgers within 20 minutes or less of the Black Angus.
Valleir and Thayer also worry the long drive-thru lines at lunch and dinner hours will further congest the busy thoroughfare that connects several neighborhoods.
The planning board chair said it recommended the property owner, Becker Properties LLC, plan for at least a 19-vehicle cue line for the In-N-Out Burger drive-thru. Also, they are not allowed to get rid of any of the mature trees on the property.
There is already a non-drive-thru Starbucks in the shopping center across the street from Black Angus.
The restaurant swap was approved 10 months ago by the Navajo Community Planning Board (NCPB). The steakhouse’s lease is ending soon and the property owner is planning for the long-term, with an eye on affordable housing. The area was re-zoned four years ago to plan for it, and In-N-Out Burger and the Starbucks are shorter lease terms.
The NCPB says the In-N-Out Burger and Starbucks should be up and running in about 18 months.
Black Angus is still in business at the moment, and restaurant officials say it has seen an increase in customers since the news broke. The restaurant’s owner has not responded to a request for comment.
Meanwhile, In-N-Out Burger fans can’t wait.
“People love In-N-Out, what can I say,” one said.