Johnny has left the building.
The 1950s-themed restaurant chain Johnny Rockets has moved its headquarters from Lake Forest to Aliso Viejo. The chain had occupied the second floor at 25550 Commercentre Drive—also the site of —but now calls 20 Enterprise home.
The move was made because "we're one of the few restaurant companies that are growing through the economic downturn," said company spokeswoman Cozette Koerber.
This year, the company will open 40 restaurants, including several in foreign locations, such as Seoul, South Korea. Johnny Rockets has nearly 300 locations worldwide.
The 12,000 square-foot space in Aliso Viejo is not much larger than the previous space, but the configuration of the space is much more desirable, Koerber said. Amenities include complimentary covered parking, a larger kitchen and break room and larger conference rooms. The new headquarters are also closer to a wider variety of restaurants where employees can eat lunch.
The company signed a five-year lease for the Aliso Viejo location. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Thirty employees work at the headquarters. Moving to the location close to the 73 toll road was a relief, especially to employees who live south, Koerber said. The Lake Forest location meant that employees would have to make their way through the traffic associated with the El Toro "Y" and Bake Parkway.
Despite the departure of a major corporation, Lake Forest Assistant City Manager David Belmer said Lake Forest has "actually fared very well as a corporate community," given the economic climate. Belmer oversees the effort to attract companies to Lake Forest.
"We're in the category of having more people who have moved in than have moved out," Belmer said.