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Shake Shack On The Way

Shake Shack is looking for Houston locations: Where should burger phenom open and can it succeed?

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Shake Shack
When Shake Shack opens, long lines follow. Photo by Shake Shack/ Facebook
Burger and fries Shake Shack
The Shack Burger has become an object of cult-like obsession.  Photo by Shake Shack/ Facebook
Shake Shack Houston announcement April 2014
Shake Shack has serious plans to come to Houston, according to a real estate firm.  Transwestern.net
Shake Shack
Burger and fries Shake Shack
Shake Shack Houston announcement April 2014

New York-based burger empire Shake Shack is looking for locations in Houston. The restaurant "has selected Houston as one of its growth markets," according to the website of the commercial real estate firm Transwestern, with "plans to open several stores...over the next few years." The broker lists various requirements for potential locations that include "high density trade areas" and "park space and/or greenspace preferred." 

 "We're just looking, trying to find the next great site for a Shack." 

The restaurant has developed a cult-like following for its signature Shack Burger. As this Eater article breaks down in painstaking detail, the Shack Burger is a classic, American burger — single or double patty, potato bun, standard toppings — that's been carefully honed for maximum deliciousness. Of course, the fries and milkshakes benefit from a similar obsession to detail. The result is a 30-unit (and growing) global chain that's been greeted with long lines wherever it pops up. Not bad for a business that famously started as a kiosk in Madison Square Park in 2004. 

Houston won't be the first Texas city to be blessed by Shake Shack's presence. The restaurant has already committed to two locations in Austin, with at least one of them open by the end of 2014. 

A Shake Shack representative sent the following statement to CultureMap: "Austin is our main focus right now—it's the only city in Texas that we have firm plans for. But it is true that we're looking at (other) cities in Texas as well. However, at this point we don't have any concrete details to share regarding future locations. We're just looking, trying to find the next great site for a Shack."

Transwestern did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Can Shake Shack compete in Houston's intensely competitive burger scene? Where should it open? Sound off in the comments. 

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