Applebee's opening postponed in Port Lavaca

Groundbreaking for Applebee's in Port Lavaca is now scheduled for August.

The delay was the result of a November special election, in which voters determined to extend late-night drinking hours for the restaurant, said Liza Hogue, real estate consultant for Applebee's.

"We only build one restaurant at a time, and the election pushed projects in Bay City and Richardson in front of Port Lavaca," Hogue said.

Applebee's was scheduled to break ground in Port Lavaca the first quarter of this year.

"We would be on schedule if not for the election," said City Manager Bob Turner. "We have no one to blame for the delay but ourselves."

The construction of the Applebee's hinged on the election results. In November, the proposition to extend late-night drinking to 2 a.m. in Port Lavaca won in a landslide vote, 1,149 to 336. Until then, alcohol sales ended at midnight during the week and 1 a.m. Saturdays.

Applebee's plans to build the same prototype in Port Lavaca that exists in Bay City. The Richardson restaurant, also a new design, is currently under construction.

Applebee's purchased land between Walgreens and O'Reilly Auto Parts on state Highway 35 on June 17, 2013, Hogue said. The restaurant initially planned to begin construction in July 2013.

The 4,400-square-foot restaurant in Port Lavaca will feature a patio, seat 150 diners and supply more than 100 jobs, Hogue said.