DeKALB – A new Popeye’s restaurant at the DeKalb Oasis Travel Plaza, 2700 Crego Road, has soft-opened and served its full menu until 6 p.m. Monday, according to a representative of HMSHost, a world leader in creating travel dining venues.
Spokeswoman Pauline Depakakibo said the restaurant opened at
10:45 a.m. Monday and cost about $500,000 to complete. She said the restaurant soft-opened to make sure everything is ready to roll once word gets out.
“We want to make sure employees are familiar and comfortable with everything,” Depakakibo said.
Soft-open hours will be 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays to start. When it gets closer to summer, hours will expand to 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m., Depakakibo added.
But with roadwork on Interstate 88 scheduled for the next several months, there is concern over how business will be affected.
“Typically from our experience, it does have a negative impact,” Depakakibo said.
Popeye’s puts a Louisiana spin on chicken, biscuits and sides. The national chain also has a location at 1127 W. Lincoln Highway, near Northern Illinois University.
The DeKalb Oasis location also will have to compete with a McDonald’s, Panda Express, Sbarro, Starbucks and Subway, all in the same building.
Although the soft opening is already underway, Depakakibo said the restaurant is still looking for employees, including shift supervisors, to accommodate for potential turnover. Applications are available at hmshost.com/careers.
A target date for the grand opening is still in the works, she said.