Q: A while ago the Mercury had an article that Manhattan was getting a Chick-fil-A. What is happening with that?
A: Yes, we first reported on plans for a new Chick-fil-A months ago, and it has been a while since we heard anything about it.
But the project is still going forward.
In fact, owner/operator David Hamel said the plan is to break ground on the restaurant next month.
“As of right now, if the weather’s good and we keep the sun coming, we’re looking at sometime in the first full week in April to break ground,” Hamel said.
The restaurant will be built in the parking lot across from the shopping center that includes Staples, Hobby Lobby, Hastings and the Dollar Tree.
Hamel said he expects it to open around the middle to latter part of August.
Plans call for a double drive-through and an indoor playground.
The national chicken chain already has a branch in the K-State Student Union, but this will be the first freestanding Chick-fil-A in Manhattan.
Hamel currently owns and operates the Chick-fil-A at West Ridge Mall in Topeka. He said he plans to transfer that store to another owner, then move to Manhattan with his wife and two kids in late May or early June.
Hamel attended K-State, where he was a backup punter on the football team. He said he’s excited to return to Manhattan.
And as construction begins, Hamel said he plans to have a number of promotions, trivia contests and giveaways.
“We’re going to be doing a lot of fun things here,” Hamel said.