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Lake Forest-based Del Taco LLC opened the first of 40 restaurants it plans to open in the Houston area on Wednesday.

The first location is owned by a franchisee, which has plans to open two more Del Tacos in the Houston market.

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The growth in Houston is expected to occur over the next several years.

Del Taco began expanding in Texas with restaurants in the Dallas and Fort Worth areas nearly two years ago.

The push into Houston comes after the Mexican fast food chain announced in February plans to grow in the Atlanta metropolitan area with 60 company-owned and franchised Del Tacos.

Del Taco has more than 530 restaurants altogether.