COSTA MESA — Casual-eatery aficionados will soon have another dining option to "eat more chicken."
Chick-fil-A, the Atlanta-based quick-service chicken restaurant franchise, broke ground Wednesday for a 4,217-square-foot location at 3181 Harbor Blvd.
Set to open mid-April, the eatery joins other chicken-selling establishments, such as El Pollo Loco and Wingnuts, on Harbor.
Chick-fil-A will be operated by franchisee Tammy Guadagno, who will be selling her Santa Ana Chick-fil-A location back to the company in order to open this one.
"We're going to take with us the same business philosophy of treating people with honor, dignity and respect," said Guadagno, who had operated the South Bristol Street location at MacArthur Boulevard for six years.
"This area of Orange County has so much opportunity for community involvement and community growth," she continued.
The new eatery will create about 50 new jobs and carry over about 20 employees from the Santa Ana location, Guadagno said.
Job seekers can fill out an application through the corporate website or visit the Costa Mesa eatery in late February when the construction is nearing completion, she said.
The move into Costa Mesa makes sense for Guadagno, who said that the Santa Ana franchise location has been a long-time supporter of both cities' schools, youth sports teams and other charitable opportunities.
"I have belief in the philosophy that to those given much, much is required," Guadagno said. "Getting to own a Chick-fil-A restaurant certainly is a gift."
The company will give out a free one-year supply of Chick-fil-A — 52 meal certificates — to the first 100 adult guests in line at the grand opening in April. To date, the company has given away more than $13 million in food, according to a news release.