In-N-Out to appeal denial of Beaverton-area restaurant
After being denied plans to build a fast-food restaurant just outside Beaverton city limits, In-N-Out Burger is appealing that decision.
On Sept. 19, the Land Use Board of Appeals received an "intent to appeal" notice from law firm Schwabe Williamson & Wyatt following a ruling by a Washington County hearings officer who denied the burger chain's request to build a restaurant and drive-thru at 10565 S.W. Beaverton-Hillsdale Highway.
The proposed restaurant, which has a loyal following of customers, would be sited in unincorporated Washington County, just outside Beaverton city limits.
The hearings officer ruled on Aug. 29 that two corners of the planned restaurant were zoned for office commercial use, a designation that would allow for vehicle-only parking. That means, he said, drive-thru traffic overflowing into those sections would violate county land-use codes.
In the past, some neighbors have shared concerns about traffic impacts and how that traffic might affect pedestrians in the area, even though company officials have said the restaurant could accommodate drive-thru traffic overflow.
Christina Gamgene, who lives on Southwest Laurel Road directly behind the planned development, said she's not only worried about the large volume of cars from the business along Beaverton-Hillsdale Highway — a roadway she said is "already turning into a car lot of cars" — but also exhaust emissions produced by those vehicles.
"Right now, we have a very bucolic setting here," said Gamgene, who has lived in her townhome for 20 years. "My comment is … In-N-Out believes it's too big to fail, and damn the impact on the community."
Currently, Hawaiian Time and a former Mexican restaurant currently occupy In-N-Out's desired site.
In-N-Out Burger also is considering at least two other locations in Washington County, specifically in Tualatin and Hillsboro.
Tualatin planning officials say that In-N-Out Burger has not notified them recently of anything new regarding its proposal to build a restaurant at the site of the now-closed Village Inn restaurant, adjacent to the Bridgeport Village shopping complex.
After 43 years in business, Village Inn shuttered its doors at 17070 S.W. 72nd Ave. in May 2020, with In-N-Out Burger reportedly paying $3.3 million for the property, according to an article last year in the Portland Business Journal.
Initial plans for the Tualatin site have called for a drive-thru lane that could fit 23 cars. During a virtual community meeting in July 2020, an In-N-Out spokesperson said the proposed site is in a location next to a major shopping mall that already has the capacity for large volumes of traffic.
Meanwhile, land-use approval was granted to In-N-Out Burger in June 2021 as part of redevelopment for Hillsboro's Tanasbourne Town Center. The burger chain said it plans to build a restaurant on the former Barnes & Noble bookstore site, according to a Hillsboro spokesperson. (The former bookstore has since been razed and relocated across Northeast Evergreen Parkway, inside space formerly occupied by Sports Authority.)
"The site and utility permits for the new quick-serve restaurant were submitted in July 2022 and are still in review," said Lauren Scott, public information officer for Hillsboro's economic and community development department.
"We do hope to open a new restaurant in Hillsboro sometime in the future. At this stage, we are in the development application process, so it's still too early to say when we will be able to open a restaurant there," Mike Abbate, assistant vice president of real estate and development for In-N-Out Burger, wrote in an email. "In addition to Hillsboro, we are exploring several other opportunities in the greater Portland-area, however, it is too early to forecast any specific outcomes within those trade areas."
Currently, the closest In-N-Out Burger to the Portland metro area is just off Interstate 5 in Keizer.
The burger chain is headquartered in Irvine, California.
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