Richland Taco Time plans move for drive-thru

A new Taco Time planned for south Richland means the closure of the city’s current Taco Time franchise in Richland’s downtown core.

The newest restaurant will open at 2222 Keene Road, near the busy intersection of Keene Road and Queensgate Boulevard, next door to an Chevron gas station.

Taco Time on Swift Boulevard closed June 10.

A wooden sign is up announcing the restaurant’s arrival, but neither Taco Time’s corporate office nor its local owner confirmed a planned opening date. The Swift Boulevard site closed June 10, according to a sign posted on the door.

The property is being developed by local investors Greg and Carla Markel under their business, Washington Securities and Investments Corp.

The Markels also own and developed the current Richland Taco Time building on Swift adjacent to the new Richland City Hall, and a second location in Kennewick on West Clearwater Avenue near Columbia Center Boulevard.

The Taco Time on Swift shares a building with Go Green Salads, which will not be relocating, as well as a Jimmy John’s. It was developed around the same time the Markels built Dupus Boomer’s Downtown restaurant on the corner of George Washington Way. That restaurant closed at the end of 2017 and the building remains vacant.

Former Dupus Boomer’s General Manager Anthony Belsito spoke on behalf of the Markels and confirmed the plans for a new Taco Time. “We are relocating the location so we are able to have a drive thru,” he said.

Taco Time restaurants in the Tri-Cities are overseen by Kahala Brands, the parent company for other national fast food locations, including Baja Fresh, Blimpie and Coldstone Creamery.

All Taco Time locations throughout western Washington, Moses Lake and Wenatchee are owned by a separate company called Taco Time Northwest.

Framing already is up on the new 2,500-square-foot building, valued at $600,000, on Keene Road. The general contractor is LCR Construction LLC of Richland.

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