Fast casual pizza concept Project Pie set to expand in seven markets

Jan. 21, 2013

Project Pie founder and CEO James Markham has announced plans to expand his fast casual pizza concept into multiple new markets within the next year, starting with an opening in San Diego in early February.

Locations are also planned for the Philippines, New York, Washington, D.C., Boulder, Colo., San Francisco and Atlanta. The flagship Project Pie opened in Las Vegas in October.

"Project Pie is about real progress in pizza — bringing custom artisan pizza to people, quickly, and at a good value," Markham said. "Over the years pizza has been topped, stuffed and dunked to almost become unrecognizable. Now, it is time to get back to the basics with simple ingredients that people actually want to eat. We're not changing pizza; we're keeping it real and making pizza the way it should be made. The team that I've gathered is great and I'm lucky to be able to do Project Pie with awesome people."

Each Project Pie location is designed to match the character of the building. The company adapts to the building's architecture while highlighting the restaurant's central elements, including "the beast" (the brand's stone hearth oven) and the menu, outlined on the wall. It also features touches of local décor other unique characteristics such as subway tile, black and white imagery and vintage industrial lighting.

Markham's objective with Project Pie's expansion is to have a chain of "one-offs," or locations that have an indie restaurant feel. In addition, Project Pie has created its own radio station — streaming a custom mix selected by Markham and his employees.

Project Pie features a design-your-own pizza line for one set price. The menu also includes salads, made-from-scratch oatmeal cream pies and hand-spun milkshakes.

The flagship Project Pie is located in Las Vegas' MGM Grand Hotel and Casino, and the forthcoming San Diego location will be located in the Hillcrest neighborhood at 3888 Fourth Ave.

Read more about franchising and growth.

Topics: Franchising & Growth , Operations Management , Restaurant Design / Layout

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