Many people have eagerly awaited the arrival of the popular California-based burger chain, In-N-Out, since it was announced in 2017 as part of the Victory Ridge development in northeast Colorado Springs.
On Tuesday, a city official confirmed the part of the project that includes In-N-Out is on schedule to open by late 2021 or early 2022.
Bop Cope, the city's economic development director, said construction has begun on a distribution center for In-N-Out, and the chain's first Colorado store will be built behind a new Victory Ridge sign at the intersection of Interquest and Voyager parkways.
"It's part of the growing Interquest corridor that is attracting a lot of retail businesses," he said. "It's one of the first mixed-use developments we've had in the city. It combines stores, shops, offices, the existing movie theater, residential housing units and even a youth sports complex."
Cope said that a second restaurant, Slim Chickens, has committed to be part of the project.
"There's a lot more coming," he said. "There's going to be a lot of competition among retail business there. That's going to attract hotels and other businesses."
Cope said the youth sports complex, called, Field of Dreams, is still being finalized and requires a land exchange between the city and the property owner.
"I think it can be a nationwide attraction," he said. "Few youth facilities are in proximity of all the amenities that we'll have here."
The project is directly south of New Life Church -- the area's largest -- and a popular restaurant such as In-N-Out could create traffic backups in its early days of business.
"I don't anticipate any traffic issues," Cope said. "Every time a new business commits to come in, we'll do a traffic study to measure the impact. Interquest and Voyager are two major roads capable of handling heavy traffic."
The 14-screen Icon Theater in Victory Ridge opened in 2017, offering customers free refills of drinks and popcorn, and is currently building what is believed to be the state's largest movie screen.
A Denver-area investment group paid $22 million for the 153-acre property in 2017, taking it over after the original developer started the Colorado Crossing project in 2007 and declared bankruptcy in 2010.
For several years between developers, several buildings remained unfinished and the development looked much like a ghost town.
"For Victory Ridge to turn that around and draw the investment it has, is really amazing," Cope said.