Popeyes opens in Lansing, Illinois


“I’ve always wanted to be in Lansing,” says owner Haneef Kassam

by Melanie Jongsma

LANSING, Ill. (February 8, 2018) – Haneef Kassam had a choice between Lansing, Illinois, and Munster, Indiana, for his 12th Popeyes restaurant. He chose Lansing. “I’ve always wanted to be in Lansing,” he said this morning during last-minute preparations for the 11:00am Grand Opening ceremony.

Lansing makes sense geographically because the Kassam family’s other stores are in Calumet City, South Holland, Glenwood, Sauk Village, Chicago, and, recently, Summit, Illinois.

But Lansing makes sense economically too. Kassam is particularly enthusiastic about his Torrence Avenue location. “This is a great corridor,” he said, citing the proximity to the highway and the recent additions of other big-name businesses. Plus, at 18100 Torrence, the new store is also close to Lansing’s Ridge Road corridor, and Kassam anticipates increased traffic as progress continues on the Fox Pointe development.

“This is the best thing we ever did,” affirmed Nizar Kassam, Haneef’s father and co-owner. Haneef’s brother Almas is the third co-owner in the project. All three owners and their general contractor, Dan Krause, mentioned how wonderful it was to work with Lansing officials throughout the construction and preparation. “It makes me want to open another store here!” laughed Nizar.

The Kassams invited Lansing officials to a ribbon-cutting event before officially opening to the public at 2:00pm this afternoon. The event included cookies from Calumet Bakery, donuts from Dunkin Donuts, and lunch ordered at the Popeyes counter.

The new Popeyes at 18100 Torrence Avenue includes a drive-through. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
The Popeyes dining room is spacious and welcoming, with large windows that provide a generous view of Torrence Avenue. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
The Kassam brothers, Haneef and Almas, spent the morning chatting with guests at the ribbon-cutting event. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
Refreshments included cookies from Calumet Bakery and donuts from Dunkin Donuts, both neighboring businesses. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
The colorful tile throughout the restaurant is part of the Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen brand and pays tribute to Louisiana culture and heritage. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
General Contractor Dan Krause has worked with the Kassan family for over 30 years. He is their contractor of choice whenever they open a new location. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
Following the ribbon-cutting, Mayor Eidam posed with the Kassam family. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
Attendees were invited to stay for lunch and order anything from the menu. Because of the delicious food and the inviting atmosphere, many Village officials and Chamber members stayed and chatted well into the afternoon. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)

Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen is now open in Lansing at 18100 Torrence Avenue. Customers began lining up even before the official 2:00pm opening, and at 5:30pm—the post-commute dinner hour—both the parking lot and drive-through were full, though the lines were moving briskly.