A new 6,500 square foot “McDonald’s of the future” will open in Missouri in July, boasting self-service kiosks, play spaces for kids, and unlimited French fries. These offerings are just some of the ways in which owner Chris Habinger hopes to attract customers to the McDonald's franchise amidst declining sales for the restaurant chain.
Habinger, who already owns seven McDonald's franchise locations in the area with his wife, Kerri, has relied on a "customizable" theme with this newest restaurant, only one element of which is the option for unlimited French fries. Sandwiches and dessert options will also be customizable to fit each individual customer's tastes and preferences. “There really are hundreds of different choices to build the burger of your dreams,” he told St. Joseph News.
The sandwiches will be customizable via kiosk.
This is part of Habinger's plan to create an ambiance that he hopes will appeal to the modern diner. “Today’s customers seek a comfortable and inviting atmosphere,” he says. “So we’re committed to providing a modern look and feel to this restaurant.”
This will include table service once customers have placed their order, as well as more comfortable seating like couches and armchairs. The McDonald's franchise will also feature a play space that Habinger described as “innovative,” with interactive light board tables and tabletop video games.
According to a building permit, the restaurant will cost an estimated $1.59 million to build.
As the fast food industry is quickly moving toward more natural, additive-free menus, like those found at Chipotle and Panera, or Taco Bell adding vegetarian options, and countless restaurants opting for antibiotic-free meats and cage-free eggs, this clear act of desperation can be seen as a response to declining sales within the McDonald's restaurant brand. McDonald’s sales began falling in 2000, with a 10 percent drop reported last July. Numbers have slowly been increasing with the recent launch of all-day breakfast.
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McDonald's image via Shutterstock