This Chicken Chain Just Got Sued For Long Drive-Thru Lines
One chain's success could become another business' nightmare—at least that's the case in Ohio, where a Chick-fil-A location is being sued by the owner of a neighboring shopping plaza. Long drive-thru lines at a Toldeo store are impacting sales at local businesses by impeding access to parking, according to the lawsuit.
The Chick-fil-A on Secor Avenue gets "very busy" on a daily basis, especially during lunch and dinner hours, according to A.J. Faulkner, the owner of Bulk Beverage. "As they backup and get busy, their line stacks in front of the other locally-owned businesses, including ours," he told Business Insider. Faulkner added that his customers frequently complain about an "unsafe environment" in the parking lot caused by the snaking lines of cars. (Related: McDonald's Is Making These 8 Major Upgrades.)
Mario Kezi, the owner of the plaza who brought the lawsuit, wrote in the filing that his aim isn't financial compensation but rather to get Chick-fil-A to fix the issue. While he alleges that the chicken chain's traffic issues may deter customers from visiting nearby stores, Faulkner noted that his business has actually been aided by the foot traffic the chain brings to the area.
With most fast-food companies currently conducting the bulk of their sales via drive-thrus, the case highlights a growing demand for better-designed and faster operations. Taco Bell, Sonic, Chipotle, and Burger King are some of the brands revamping their drive-thru layouts to better accommodate growing numbers of waiting customers. And the race for the most efficient drive-thru could be one that separates quick service restaurants that thrive in the new post-pandemic landscape from those that become obsolete.
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