Burger King unveils new restaurants designed in light of the pandemic

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Burger King announced today that it will be building new restaurants to meet the demands of the pandemic — by limiting person-to-person contact and eliminating the need to go inside.

The first new restaurants are set to open in Miami, Latin America, and the Caribbean in 2021, with a design focused on multiple ordering and delivery methods and a reduced physical footprint.

The innovative eateries will have dedicated areas for curbside pickup, walk-up ordering, and drive-thru, as well as outdoor seating and food lockers where customers can retrieve their app-purchased meals straight from the kitchen.

Coming soon! Burger King announced today that it will be building new 'touchless' restaurants to meet the demands of the pandemic

Coming soon! Burger King announced today that it will be building new ‘touchless’ restaurants to meet the demands of the pandemic

Warmer climates: The first new restaurants are set to open in Miami, Latin America, and the Caribbean in 2021

Warmer climates: The first new restaurants are set to open in Miami, Latin America, and the Caribbean in 2021

The chain said in a press release today that tech, operations, and food innovation teams all weighed in on the design, which was created by the Restaurant Brands International in-house design group.

Overall, the restaurants have a physical footprint 60 per cent smaller than a traditional Burger King, and are outfitted with several new features intended to meet the demands of a changing world.

While customers can still walk inside, order their food, and eat, there are quite a few options that allow customers to limit their contact with others and remain outdoor or in their vehicles.

One highlight includes an outdoor-facing walk-up ordering window, where customers can order and pick up food without going inside.

Innovative: The design is focused on multiple ordering and delivery methods and a reduced physical footprint

Innovative: The design is focused on multiple ordering and delivery methods and a reduced physical footprint

Faster: The drive-thru section has been expanded, with double or even triple lanes for pulling up to order to keep things running quickly

Faster: The drive-thru section has been expanded, with double or even triple lanes for pulling up to order to keep things running quickly

Ways to get food: One highlight includes an outdoor-facing walk-up ordering window, where customers can order and pick up food without going inside (left)

Ways to get food: One highlight includes an outdoor-facing walk-up ordering window, where customers can order and pick up food without going inside (left)

'[The] new restaurant design plans ...pushed the limits of what a Burger King restaurant could be,' Josh Kobza, Restaurant Brands International Chief Operating Officer, said

‘[The] new restaurant design plans …pushed the limits of what a Burger King restaurant could be,’ Josh Kobza, Restaurant Brands International Chief Operating Officer, said

Open sesame! A new addition is Burger King's new pickup lockers, where guests can grab the food straight from the kitchen after ordering through the app

Open sesame! A new addition is Burger King’s new pickup lockers, where guests can grab the food straight from the kitchen after ordering through the app

The drive-thru section has been expanded, with double or even triple lanes for pulling up to order to keep things running quickly. Food is delivered via conveyor belt.

The new features in Burger King’s ‘touchless’ restaurants 

  • Drive-in dining with solar-powered canopies and contactless ordering using QR codes  
  • Curbside delivery 
  • Coded pick-up lockers outside the restaurant for mobile and online orders
  • Outdoor dining 
  • Multi-lane drive-thru
  • External walk-up window 
  • Suspended kitchen and dining room above the drive-thru lanes to reduce the building footprint 
  • Conveyer belt for contactless food delivery in-store 

 

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At some restaurants, customers will be able place their orders under solar-powered canopies, where they can stay and eat.

There’s also a curbside pickup area for customers who order ahead on the app. After purchasing, customers can pull up into a pickup spot, and notify the restaurant that they’ve arrived through the app. Employees then bring the food out to the car.  

An alternative to curbside pickup are Burger King’s new pickup lockers, where guests can grab the food straight from the kitchen after ordering through the app.

For those who want to stay and eat, there is both a traditional indoor dining room and a patio with outdoor seating.

In a statement the brand explained that ‘the design of this restaurant allows a 100 per cent touchless experience’. 

‘In March our in-house design and tech team accelerated new restaurant design plans and pushed the limits of what a Burger King restaurant could be,’ Josh Kobza, Restaurant Brands International Chief Operating Officer, said in a press release. 

‘We took into consideration how consumer behaviors are changing and our guests will want to interact with our restaurants. The result is a new design concept that is attractive to guests and will allow our franchisees to maximize their return.’  

‘The designs we’ve created completely integrate restaurant functionality and technology. The restaurant of the tomorrow merges the best functional technology with unique modern design to elevate our Burger King guest experience,’ added Rapha Abreu, Global Head of Design at Restaurant Brands International. 

‘We designed the interior and exterior spaces like we had a blank sheet of paper, designing without preconceived notions of how a Burger King restaurant should look.’   

Sit and stay! For those who want to stay and eat, there is a traditional indoor dining room

Sit and stay! For those who want to stay and eat, there is a traditional indoor dining room

Outdoor dining: There is also  a patio with outdoor seating elevated above the drive-thru

Outdoor dining: There is also  a patio with outdoor seating elevated above the drive-thru

Traditional: Customers can still walk inside an order at the counter if they choose

Traditional: Customers can still walk inside an order at the counter if they choose

Beep boop! Touch screens allow customers to reduce face-to-face contact

Beep boop! Touch screens allow customers to reduce face-to-face contact

Get going! There's also a curbside pickup area for customers who order ahead on the app

Get going! There’s also a curbside pickup area for customers who order ahead on the app

Cool! At some restaurants, customers will be able place their orders under solar-powered canopies, where they can stay and eat

Cool! At some restaurants, customers will be able place their orders under solar-powered canopies, where they can stay and eat

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