Phil’s BBQ, a consistent winner of best barbecue in San Diego County, said it plans to open its third restaurant in the county at the Trolley Square Town Center in Santee.

The eatery, which was founded in 1998 by Phil Pace, is taking over a lease from The Roadhouse Grill. That franchise shuttered the local restaurant and two others in the area last year.

Fred Glick, Phil’s vice president of operations, said the company had been looking for a spot in East County for several years and considered both El Cajon and La Mesa before deciding on the location. It operates restaurants in the Midway district of San Diego and San Marcos.

Glick said the business will invest about $2 million into renovations and is targeting a September opening. The businesses have about 100 workers, he said.

— Mike Allen