Five Guys Burgers and Fries is one of the most rapidly-growing fast-casual chains out there, with $950 million in sales in 2011, a 32.8 percent increase from the year before, according to QSR. So when they decided to open a sprawling, 5,000-square-foot franchise on the north end of Brooklyn’s Park Slope neighborhood, just a stone’s throw from the new Barclays Center (the home of the Nets), they most likely agreed that the presumed high level of foot traffic from folks on their way to and from events at the arena would help keep the restaurant full.
That turned out to not be the case, however, as neighborhood blog Here’s Park Slope reported this morning that the location has shut down.
So this begs a question: With the opening of the Barclays Center a likely influence on the decision to open a franchise in this location, was the lack of foot traffic produced by the arena an influence upon its closure?
One of the main complaints against the arena moving into the largely residential neighborhood was the assumption that its opening would be responsible for a glut of chains opening in its proximity. But in reality, the only new businesses that have opened in the area so far are quality restaurants, such as Woodland and Carlton Park, which is right across the street from the Five Guys.
However, chains are still hard at work plotting to take over the area directly surrounding the arena. Starbucks, Panera Bread, Dave & Busters, and TGI Friday’s are all eyeing surrounding real estate, according to the New York Post, and will soon most likely have a major presence there.
As to whether or not they will actually succeed, the closure of this Five Guys might prove to be a foreshadowing of what’s to come.