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Bojangles' LaFollette site expected to break ground as early as this week

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By Brent Schanding

 LaFOLLETTE—Entrepreneur Michael White of Huffbo, LLC, is expected to debut a Bojangles’ restaurant here as early as next spring, according to reports from the Charlotte, N.C.-based franchise.

The announcement to bring the fast-food chain here was made earlier this year and deal was finalized at the 2140 Jacksboro Pike site in late November. 

Grading and construction on the site’s parking lot was already expected to begin, White said, but the project was delayed temporarily because of rainy weather. 

Groundbreaking is expected to resume as early as this week, White said. 

“It really only takes about 90 days to build one of our restaurants,” he said. 

The restaurant is expected to initially hire about 70 part- and full-time employees, White said. 

“When you open, you need a whole lot of people and a whole lot of parking spaces. But after the first three months the newness wears off,” White said. “We will probably end up somewhere about 40-50 employees later,” depending on the volume of customers. 

White — who owns 10 Bojangles’ franchises, including stores in Clinton, Powell and Knoxville — said he was enticed to develop a LaFollette site after scouting the area earlier this year and noticing heavy traffic flow along the U.S. 25W corridor. 

“We’re excited about coming to LaFollette… We feel like we’ve been well received,” he said. “You’re the kind of community we’d like to be in. We like to participate in the communities we’re in.” 

White said the Bojangles’ franchise has a history of giving back to non-profits, business and local churches. He indicated other stores have donated cups, food and other resources to local causes. 

“We definitely want to put something back to the community,” he said. 

Bojangles’ serves Southern-style breaded chicken, buttermilk biscuits, sandwiches and serves breakfast all day. 

The restaurant has 560 locations in 10 states and Washington, D.C., primarily in the Southeast. Forbes listed Bojangles’ as one of the top 12 Best Fast-Food Franchises to own, according to several industry rankings.