Sweetgreen, an American fast casual restaurant chain that serves salads, revealed it will open its very first drive-thru location as well as ordering from parking spots by 2021. The company has plans to expand from cities into suburban America.
Amid the ongoing pandemic, restaurants are restructuring their operations in order to offer an off-premises method of safely ordering food. Fast casuals such as Shake Shack and Chipotle, which had previously strayed away from drive-thru services, are now heavily investing in the method for the future. According to the NPD Group, drive-thru orders jumped 24% throughout the restaurant industry in October alone.
The chain revealed it will open its new location in Highlands Ranch, Colorado in Winter 2021 with both drive-thru and drive-in features. The drive-thru will be available for digital-order pickup and the drive-in will offer customers a concierge and an in-car dining experience. Furthermore, there will be an outdoor patio for clients that choose to eat on the premises.
Chief Concept Officer Nic Jammet said, “A lot of our customers already have this behavior of using the Sweetgreen app to order ahead and come in ahead to pick it up.”
Sweetgreen has not openly reported its performance throughout the pandemic, however, in October the company revealed it would be laying off 20% of its corporate staff due to the economic downturn.
“We have moved forward with reorganizing and restructuring our team so we can put our company on a stronger and more focused path to profitable growth,” CEO Jonathan Neman said in a letter posted to Medium at the time. “This will mean different things for different people—some roles will evolve, some departments will remain the same, and unfortunately, some roles will be eliminated.”