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Glendale - After receiving multiple inquiries from national restaurants and coffee chains, Glendale officials are considering lifting the city-wide moratorium on fast food drive-thru restaurants.

Glendale Mayor Bryan Kennedy said city officials in the mid-1990s placed a city-wide moratorium on fast-food drive-thru restaurants to prevent them from spreading out to Green Bay Avenue and other areas of the city. All drive-through restaurants are concentrated on Port Washington Road between Marne Avenue and Silver Spring Drive.  Pharmacies and other businesses with drive-thrus are not regulated in the same way.

Under current law, any fast food restaurants interested in coming to Glendale need to purchase a property that is already occupied by a drive-thru fast food restaurant. That's why Arby's purchased the old Burger King building at 5260 N. Port Washington Road. Per city requirements, Arby's is rebuilding in the exact same footprint as Burger King, to avoid losing its status as a grandfathered drive-thru.

Kennedy said the city has been approached multiple times by large national restaurants and coffee chains seeking drive-thru capabilities, including a large national chain that is interested in purchasing an auto shop on Port Washington Road. To allow that business, the Plan Commissions would have to reconsider Glendale's moratorium on drive-thrus on Port Washington Road between Marne Avenue and Silver Spring Drive.

"Since nearly every lot on that stretch of road is already developed and has customer traffic in-and-out, lifting the moratorium on drive-throughs in that particular area of the city might allow for some businesses to turn over and be redeveloped by one or more of these national chains," Kennedy wrote in a letter to the common council.

If the plan commission agrees to the idea, it would have to change the city's master plan. The common council would then vote on revising the city ordinance.

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