HOUSTON (FOX 26) - The Turkey Leg Hut has become one of Houston's hottest restaurants since it opened in December 2017. But its huge success has also become a huge problem for residents in the Museum Park neighborhood.
There's always a long line just to get a table at the Turkey Leg Hut—even mid-afternoon on a weekday. On the weekends, customers wait up to an hour or two for a taste of this local comfort food gem.
Business has been so successful, the owners are now expanding to include two food trucks, a Daiquiri Hutt and a Breakfast Hut along Almeda Road.
“We’re expanding a couple blocks that way and then we have a couple of other projects we're working on. Our Urban Ice House is coming up over on Emancipation,” said owner, Nakia Price.
But with the restaurant’s huge success, comes growing pains for residents like Sandra Stevens, who've lived in the neighborhood for the last 14 years.
“There's much more of a party, drinking culture that we see and it attracts people who want to be a part of that,” Stevens said.
Stevens serves as the President of the Museum Park Neighborhood Association. She said the restaurant enables its customers who cause parking problems and too much noise for those who just want peace and quiet.
“It’s gotten to the point where the residents cant park in front of their own homes, ever, during those peak times. And I get it that the streets belong to the public, but I think part of the issue with the parking is the trash that the customers leave on the street when they leave the Turkey Leg Hut. Unfortunately, when they’ve been heavily drinking, they don’t have inhibitions they would usually exhibit in public. They are urinating in the yards, in people’s front yards and other things that people don’t want in the neighborhood,” Stevens said.
But their complaints and concerns have not gone unnoticed by the owners who say they've even considered building an entire parking structure to help.
“We try to be good neighbors. I think we're being proactive instead of being reactive. We've secured about six parking lots here just for the Turkey Leg Hut, and it’s still not enough. Just be patient. We hear you. It's never our intent to upset anyone. My husband and I both grew up in this neighborhood so we understand what it's like to be good neighbors. So just be patient with us and we hear you,” Price said.
Price said they have scheduled another meeting with the Parking District next month to try and keep both their customers and their neighbors happy.
Houston City Council member Dwight Boykins has served the district since 2014 and says he’s received multiple complaints from residents in the neighborhood.
“They have one of two options. They can come over and talk to the owners or two, they can call my office and we'll put the meeting together. If it's a major issue, my goal is within that week, we'll have some sort of dialogue to deal with that issue,” Boykins said.