Question: I was curious if there was any update on the Raising Cane’s location (in Sterling)? I haven’t seen any activity there and it’s been quite some time. I’m dying to get this chain up here. — Jim F.
You’re not the only one wondering, Jim. This is one of the more frequent questions we get. Raising Cane’s must have a lot of fans in Northern Virginia. But good news — the project continues to move forward and there was a new development just in the past week.
The Burn was the first media outlet to report the news that Raising Cane’s was looking to move into the DC area. (Click here to see our report from September 2020 — one year ago this week.)
We told you how the Louisana-based brand was planning on bringing its popular chicken tender restaurant to the Dulles Eastern Plaza shopping center in Sterling. That’s the center off Atlantic Boulevard, just south of Nokes Boulevard anchored by a Best Buy, a World Market, a Bed, Bath and Beyond and a Chili’s Grill & Bar.
Cane’s is taking over the parcel of land where a shuttered Capitol One bank building currently sits. The bank will be torn down to make way for the new Raising Cane’s building, which will include two drive-thru ordering lanes.
Since our first report, the project has been moving forward, but much of the initial work isn’t visible to the average passer-by.
In a typical project like this, the restaurant has to go through paperwork at the county level — this could include resolving any zoning issues, having plans approved and getting the needed permits. That’s what’s been happening for the past year.
Now, just a few days ago, the company put out a request for construction bids. This is the next phase in the project. Various construction firms and sub-contractors will bid on the project before the winners of the bid are selected.
After that, demolition of the bank building should begin, and then construction of the new 3,400 s.f. restaurant building. Once the construction firm turns over the building to Raising Cane’s, supplies need to be ordered and staff needs to be hired and trained before opening day.
Raising Cane’s was founded in Baton Rouge in 1996 and now has more than 500 restaurants around the country. There are several locations in Virginia — the closest are Charlottesville and Richmond — but Sterling will be one of the first in the DC market. There are also locations in the works for Manassas and Union Station in DC.
The brand is known for its simple, focused menu: chicken finger combos and chicken finger sandwiches along with crinkle-cut fries, Texas toast, and iced tea. That’s basically it. If you don’t believe us, you can see the full Raising Cane’s menu here.
If you’ve got a Burning Question for The Burn about something you’ve spotted in the area related to roads, restaurants, retail or other things we cover, send it to [email protected] and we’ll see if we can get you an answer.