Shell Shack in Texas closed its Denton restaurant over the weekend. Dallas Hale is the president and CEO. He says he lost his lease at the building on South Loop 288 near I-35E.
Hale told me he was “bummed” about being unable to reach him by phone on June 19, which was the last day that the Denton Restaurant was open.
Hale stated that it was the exact location he wanted to be in. He opened the Shell Shack Uptown Dallas in 2013 and has other locations in Houston, Plano, Fort Worth, and Houston. “I just love Denton. And the fact that TxDOT came into our eminent domain to force us out is really sad. We made it through COVID, but business was going well for us.”
Hale claimed that he knew the construction project that would expand I-35 from six- to eight lanes back when Denton opened its Denton store, but he also said that he was told he had had the information for at most nine years. He estimated that he spent nearly $500,000 to renovate the building. Hale claims that the Texas Department of Transportation advised him that he would be losing his lease in a year. He doesn’t have the property and will not receive any of those funds.
Hale said, “Unfortunately I didn’t possess an eminent domain Clause.” “Eminent Domain has never been invoked during my 30-year career in this industry. It’s not something you often see. Everything we do now has an eminent clause.
TxDOT public information officer Emily McCann said that the construction project should be complete by 2023. McCann wrote in an email, “Scope was extended to the project so that it includes the northbound entrance road from Brinker Road Loop 288.” “TxDOT acquired this property in August 2020 as part the additional scope of work.”
Hale indicated that he has begun looking for a new Denton building and plans to reopen Shell Shack in the shortest time possible. Many of his Denton employees have been relocated to other areas.
Shell Shack Denton was closed on June 19. You can find the five other North Texas locations at Shellshack.com.