It's not like anyone needs more fast food joints, but if you're going to get one, In-N-Out is pretty much the prime choice (local, fresh, f'ing delicious, etc.). Mayor Garcetti or his predecessor Mayor Villaraigosa actually tried to bring In-N-Out to either fast-gentrifying Downtown or to finally-upgrading-its-food-options LAX, but was turned down flat because the company refuses to open a store without a drive-through. But that's not all—broker/blogger Brigham Yen re-inquired with the chain's real estate department and found "In-N-Out won't consider Downtown LA unless it can open a stand-alone restaurant on a sprawly acre of land that provides up to 45 surface parking spots, and get this, a drive-thru lane with capacity for up to 15 cars!" Good lord. (Updated: The Westwood location sits on about half an acre, according to the city's zoning website; the Hollywood location seems to have a bit less than a full acre.)
Yen points out that In-N-Out was founded right here in the LA 'burbs (*Baldwin Park) back in 1948, and is kind of our thing, but doesn't seem to be growing up (and out of the car) with the rest of the area, and especially with densifying Downtown. They also don't seem to care that a fast food restaurant will probably do pretty well in a high-foot-traffic area. In-N-Out apparently made an exception for a pedestrian-oriented, non-drive-through restaurant on South Brand Boulevard in Glendale.
· In-N-Out Burger: "We're Not Coming to Downtown LA without a (Suburban) Drive-Thru Location" [Brigham Yen]