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Goodbye, Jack. Hello, Fresh & Easy

Jack in the Box's PCH outpost was torn down Tuesday to make room for a pilot express grocery store.

It was nice knowing you, Jack.

The Jack in the Box on Pacific Coast Highway, Seal Beach’s solution to late-night munchies west of the 405 Freeway, is no more. After serving fries and Cokes and Jumbo Jacks for a generation, the restaurant was demolished Tuesday.

Construction will begin soon on the Fresh & Easy Express that will replace it.

The miniature Fresh & Easy is scheduled to open sometime next year. Along with Seal Beach, the chain plans to open mini-stores in Laguna Niguel, San Pedro, Hermosa Beach and West Los Angeles, said company spokesman Brendan Wonnacott.

“This will be among our first express stores in the area,” said Wonnacott. “Construction will be starting in the near future.”

The 4,320-square-foot grocery store will feature signature Fresh & Easy products, including ready-made meals, plus produce and alcohol.

Originally from Britain, Fresh & Easy bills itself as a grocery store that offers wholesome and fresh foods at low prices. The smaller express store concept is a new initiative aimed at dense, established neighborhoods such as Old Town Seal Beach.

It will sit about a mile from Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods and Albertsons. Fresh & Easy already has stores in neighboring Huntington Beach and Long Beach.

“We think this is the perfect opportunity ... to continue to test our idea of having mini-versions of Fresh & Easy," he said.

Seal Beach has been in the company's sights for quite some time, Wonnacott said. The sales floor at the Seal Beach location will be roughly 3,000 square feet.

The store should bring 25 to 45 jobs to the Seal Beach area, he said. According to Wonnacott, entry-level jobs start at $10 per hour and include benefits and a 401(k) plan.

-- Patch reporter Kelsey Duckett contributed to this report.

TELL US WHAT YOU THINK IN THE COMMENT BOX

Nat Ferguson October 19, 2011 at 03:52 PM
The most interesting thing was the 16 comments I received after posting this picture on my Facebook wall. Honestly the reaction was split 50/50 between those who were sad to see it go, and those that were happy to see it go. I never would have guessed that!
chris roy October 19, 2011 at 04:00 PM
I was sad only because of my memories. I had my first real job working there when I was 17 and made $1.10 an hour working at Jack in the Box in 1969! Happy to have something convenient and healthy to replace it!
Richard 90740 October 19, 2011 at 04:03 PM
not happy to see Jack-In-The-box go ............ nearest one is now at PCH and Warner .... too far to walk

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