There are big things in the works for one of the busiest shopping stretches in Ocean County, with one popular fast food chain already in the works on Route 9 in Lacey Township, and a trio of additional popular food and drink chains in the planning stages.

As we told you back in June, the former Burger King at the Lacey Mall will become a Popeyes, with the owners still hoping for a grand opening date before the end of the year.

Also in the planning stages are no fewer than three more food and drink spots, with Starbucks, Chipotle, and a new Burger King location all being presented to Township officials in the last two weeks.

Not only has there been reporting that all three proposals are either in the process of preparing presentations or have been presented to the Lacey Township Planning Board, but the community chatter has been growing on social media as well, with hundreds of comments already going through the influential Lacey Township Chatter Facebook group.

While the Popeyes was approved way back in June (which feels like forever ago at this point), the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic has slowed just about every single project everywhere down, a Patch report quotes the developer as hoping that the new restaurant will indeed be completed and open for hungry locals before 2020 is over.

The Starbucks, Chipotle, and Burger King projects are all still in the development phase, and being that it's the middle of September already, we likely won't see those restaurants opening for some time yet.

We'll keep you updated on all of the projects as more official details are released.

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