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The retro fast food joint just officially bought the old Village Inn spot in Tualatin.

COURTESY PHOTO: IN-N-OUT BURGER - In-n-Out Burger just bought the old Village Inn site next to Bridgeport Village mall, making it the likeliest site for its first Portland-area burger joint. The 1940s era eaterie is popular in California and spreading north.

In-N-Out Burger is getting closer to opening its first Portland area outlet next to Bridgeport Village.

The fast food joint with a fervent following just paid $3.3 million for the former Village Inn restaurant at 17070 S.W. 72nd Ave., Jonathan Bach reported Friday in the Portland Business Journal.

The Village Inn restaurant closed in May 2020 after 43 years. The Times reported in July 2020 that the Bridgeport site was just one under consideration.

COURTESY GRAPHIC: GOOGLE IMAGE/ IN-N-OUT BURGER - Site of the old Village Inn site next to Bridgeport Village mall which In-n-Out Burger just bought.

"We are exploring some possible locations in possibly Beaverton, maybe Happy Valley, Hillsboro, Oregon City, perhaps Vancouver," said Cassie Yee, a project manager for In-N-Out Burger, at the time.

In-N-Out has a restaurant in Keizer, near Salem, and another in Southern Oregon. From California, it has been spreading north.

In-N-Out founder Harry Snyder introduced California's first drive-thru hamburger stand in the San Gabriel Valley region of Los Angeles County, California, in 1948, and soon added the first two-way speaker box for touchless ordering.

COURTESY GRAPHIC: IN-N-OUT BURGER - How In-N-Out Burger might look on the site of the old Village Inn in Tualatin.

The sale by former Village Inn owner Connie Watt is noted in Washington County records. According to the PBJ, CoStar Group also lists In-N-Out as the owner of the Southwest 72nd Avenue property.

Tualatin City Manager Sherilyn Lombos said the city has yet to receive an land-use application for the site.

In-N-Out has also floated possible locations along Southwest Beaverton-Hillsdale Highway in Beaverton and, according to The Oregonian/, Northeast Evergreen Parkway in Hillsboro.

As Pamplin Media Group previously reported, the restaurant has also held neighborhood meetings about building a restaurant in Beaverton, across from Asian supermarket Uwaijimaya.

Ed Guzman, a Hillsboro city spokesperson, confirmed that In-N-Out hasn't yet submitted site development permitting documents for the city to review. Such permitting is the next step in the application process, Guzman told Pamplin Media Group.

Some neighbors in both Beaverton and Hillsboro have voiced concern about traffic impacts.

Last year, a project manager said preliminary plans for an In-N-Out Burger in Tualatin included an extra-long drive-thru lane and more parking spaces than the city code would require.

"I think we've come up with a building that complements the area quite nicely and complements the city of Tualatin," Cassie Yee said at a virtual neighborhood meeting in July 2020.

Editor's note: This story has been updated with more information on In-N-Out Burger's activity and planning throughout Portland's Westside suburbs. Max Egener contributed to this report.

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