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Long lines expected as popular fried chicken franchise opens doors in Coquitlam

Popeyes at Sunwood Square Mall is the 20th location in B.C. for the American franchise.

Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, the American fried chicken chain, has a new store opening in Coquitlam tomorrow (Aug. 25).

Located in the Sunwood Square Mall (3025 Lougheed Hwy.), the quick service restaurant will open at 10:30 a.m. with free giveaways for the first 100 guests.

Operations manager Vishal Singapuri said giveaways will continue through the weekend, and there will be a DJ and other family-friendly fun as well.

"We are really pumped up," said Singapuri of the staff who have been training this week for the grand opening.

The Coquitlam opening of Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen is the 20th franchise to open in B.C. since 2019, said Singapuri.

"We are really at a milestone," he added, noting that the company wants to double the number of stores in the province over the next three years.

Popeyes has been on an aggressive expansion in recent years, with the first B.C. Popeyes restaurant opening in Port Coquitlam on Hawkins Street in Fremont Village.

Singapuri said he believes there is a big appetite in the region for fried chicken and Popeyes signature spices and flavour are appealing to many.

"People love fried chicken, they love to try our flavours," he said.

Customers showing up before Popeyes opened

Additionally, the menu includes popular sandwiches, tenders, eight signature sides and desserts.

There will also be special promotions each month, Singapuri said.

Lineups could be expected on opening days as customers have been showing up even as Popeyes was getting the new store ready. As soon as the drive-thru menu was installed a customer drove up to be served.

Singapuri said he had to tell the customer they weren't open yet.

Now, with the grand opening just hours away, Singapuri said Popeyes will be able to welcome customers with open arms.

"Finally, they're able to be happy," he said.

Meanwhile, across town at 565 Clarke Rd., Hi Five Chicken, a B.C.-based franchise, has announced it will be opening soon.