Famous Dave’s Barbecue May Locate Next to Chipotle

Falls Church Times Staff

January 2, 2011

In something of a coup, the Broaddale Center appears likely to welcome national barbecue chain Famous Dave’s to the spot vacated by the Original Pancake House last fall.

It’s a coup for the Broaddale owners, who add another deep-pocketed national chain to their bustling strip mall at 370 West Broad Street, which already houses Starbucks and Chipotle.

It’s also a boon to the city, which will once again start seeing revenue from one of the larger restaurant venues in town, and to area diners, who will get a well-regarded restaurant company that serves everything from ribs and pulled pork to chicken and catfish.

The Minneapolis-based company currently has five locations in Virginia, with the closest in Oakton and Chantilly.

It’s not clear if the company has signed a lease for the Broaddale location yet. Neither city nor Broaddale officials could be reached on the holiday, but the company has requested a zoning variance to allow a larger than normal sign at the proposed site. Presumably, they have at least signed a letter of intent.

The sign ordinance sets limits of ten square feet, and Famous Dave’s is asking to quadruple that limit in order to display a 44 square foot sign. That would make it four by 11 or perhaps about seven by six. The Board of Zoning Appeals is scheduled to hear the request Jan. 13.

At first glance, it would seem that the Broaddale space is too small for a Famous Dave’s. Many of their 177 locations nationwide are in more suburban, Fairfax County-like mall environments, frequently in freestanding buildings.

But the company says it also is interested in locations that are “end caps” — retail lingo for the end of a strip mall — that range from 4,000 to 6,000 square feet. The Broaddale space is 5,425 square feet, according to the city’s commercial space database, putting it right in the ballpark.

One issue may be parking. The Broaddale center already is crowded. Famous Dave’s says it seeks 110 dedicated parking spaces for its end cap locations. Broaddale has about 60 spots to the west side of the facility’s entrance, according to an informal count. It may have about 100 overall, but those obviously serve the other businesses at the plaza as well.

The Original Pancake House, which left the Broaddale Center in the fall, has moved just outside the city limits and is adjacent to the Safeway at 7395 Lee Hwy.

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By Stephen Siegel
January 2, 2011 


3 Responses to “Famous Dave’s Barbecue May Locate Next to Chipotle”

  1. TFC on January 2nd, 2011 6:37 pm

    Yum. Hope it works out but I imagine the parking lot issues noted could be a big factor in the decision.

  2. Andy Rankin (Falls Church) on January 2nd, 2011 10:05 pm

    I assume they’re comfortable with the parking situation – seems unlikely they would get this far without having a sense for what parking is available.

  3. Jennifer on February 2nd, 2011 5:51 pm

    I like Famous Daves.I used to eat at Famous Daves alot when I lived in North Carolina.They have great food there.However due to the limited parking spaces I dont know how Famous daves will do over there.

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