FREEPORT, Ill. (WTVO) — Beefaroo is in the “preliminary stages” of opening a new restaurant location in Freeport.

According to city records, the company will petition the Freeport Department of Community Development on Monday, November 20th, to build a fast-food restaurant in a portion of the parking lot of The Meadows Shopping Center on S. West Avenue.

The submitted special use application includes a provision for outdoor seating.

The Meadows, which was remodeled late last year, currently has five operating restaurants.

Earlier this year, Beefaroo announced new locations in Beloit, Janesville, and Monroe, Wisconsin, with plans to expand across the U.S.

Its “modular container location concept” was used in the opening of the Beefaroo location at Highcrest Centre on N. Alpine Road, in Rockford, last year.

NEXT Brands and Development acquired the franchising rights to Beef-A-Roo in 2021 and announced plans to expand the chain to 50 locations in the Midwest and Southeast in the next 3-5 years.

The company’s website lists locations in Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Missouri, and Texas.

Beefaroo was founded in Rockford in 1967 and is currently owner-operated, although Beef-A-Roo was named the “Best Regional Food Chain in Illinois” by in October 2021.

The company was founded in Rockford in 1967, and opened a location in the Chicago suburb of West Dundee in June 2021.