Popular Seabrook pizza shop moves to flee SH-146 construction

SEABROOK, Texas (KTRK) -- Summer is almost here, and you may find your favorite spot along SH-146 in Seabrook or Kemah has disappeared.

It's quite possible it hasn't gone far. Such is the case for Mario's Pizza.

The bridge between Seabrook and Kemah is undergoing major reconstruction. TxDOT is widening the corridor and adding express lanes during a five-year project.

RELATED: Outriggers Seafood Grill & Bar in Seabrook closing its doors

For Mario's Pizza, it wasn't the end, but certainly has been a detour. Mario's is now open just a quarter mile away, at its new location on NASA Parkway.

"We're still here. The highway is coming, but we're still here," says co-owner Andrew Pakkala.

Pakkala said moving was a daunting task, making financial plans, obtaining permits, and transforming a former chiropractor's office into a restaurant ready to serve hand-tossed pizza.

SEE ALSO: Hwy 146 expansion project begins in Seabrook and Kemah

While he says TxDOT will help reimburse costs, the move was definitely a leap of faith, and not for every business.

"It's sad to see some of these businesses go, businesses that have been here 30 or 40 years," Pakkala said.

Customers, old and new, are already finding the restaurant. Patron Fred Lowe drives over the bridge from Kemah, and admits it's even better when he's lucky enough to avoid the traffic.

"You almost have to pick the time, because on the weekends, you don't want to come over here and fight the traffic back," Lowe said.

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